HELP WANTED–2nd Year Onions?

You know that stage of budding friendships when people stop discussing their successes and start revealing their insecurities, their BO, their failings, their lapsed credit? (In my youth (a word which in my mind is now always pronounced as Danny DeVito does it in My Cousin Vinny, viz, ‘yoot’) I knew we’d reached that stage when the other person said something like, "So—just how tall are you?") Well, folks, I feel we’ve reached that stage. I hope we have, because otherwise your system may undergo a shock.

Yes, I am about to reveal information which will permanently dislodge me from that gardening pedestal upon which I have hitherto resided. The aura of perfection will be shredded; the mantle of infallibility will fall, and I will stand before you as a (very short) human being.

Leeks1 The question itself is simple: how good are leeks and onions which didn’t get picked in the fall and resprout the following spring? The ones I have in mind—or at least in my garden—never reached maturity, and seem perfectly healthy. Some are budding. Is it important to pull them before they flower or go to seed? Are onions that winter over of lower quality?

I’ve found that overlooked carrots, for instance, are woody and often pocked. What about onions?

So now you know. I don’t even harvest everything in my garden, I don’t clean out the beds in the fall, and I plant so late that some things don’t have a chance to fulfill their potential. I know it comes as a shock, but there it is. If you can’t live with that, maybe we should rethink this whole relationship..

6 Responses to HELP WANTED–2nd Year Onions?

  1. Love it! Here’s my personal admission – many of my tomato seedlings have failed, I can’t figure out why, and I’m tempted just to buy all of my tomatoes as transplants next year!
    I had some overwintered leeks and they weren’t too bad. Hard to tell. I made some soup!

  2. Ha ha! But I’ve committed all these sins and worse…I’ve never grown onions yet!

  3. ::gasp:: Sinner! :) Not sure about the onions…it’s a good question.

  4. Glad to hear you’ve got similar propensities, Rach, but the question is, were your over-wintered leeks budding? Should I yank them before they flower?
    Good to know I’ve got company (good company) in this closet–or out of it. I’m going to start selling “I AM A LOUSY GARDENER” T-shirts.
    Pear-leek soup is one of my favorites, but this would be a very small batch. So this fall maybe I should neglect my garden more?
    -kate

  5. What happens in the blogosphere stays in the blogosphere! Your secret’s safe.
    Thanks for stopping over at One Single Impression. I hope you’ll join in whenever you feel like it.
    Whew. And I thought maybe the closet door had cracked open.
    As for OSI–I’ll defiinitely be back. Thanks for tracking me down here!

  6. My onions went to seed last year – the flowers were wonderful – I am thinking of growing some in the flower border.
    I think you are supposed to cut off the flower for a better onion.
    Regards
    Karen
    THANK YOU. That’s what I suspected. Maybe you could test the theory on those wild garlic in your recent post. What a show! We have wild onions in the montains here in Montana, but nothing that lush. Where are you?
    –kate

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