Monday, August 12, 2013

Storing Onions

So you may remember my post on Harvesting Onions with all those beautiful onions hanging on a ladder in my garage to cure.

Well those onions have now dried and look like this. 

 

The next step is to cut them down and put them into storage waiting to be used up.  With proper storage these onions will last many, many months.

The first thing I did was cut the bunches down by cutting the twine off the ladder.  Next I cut each onion off of the bunch with scissors cutting the next about an inch or two above the onion bulb.  A few of the larger onions still had wet necks, meaning the stem growing out of the top of the onion was still wet of juicy when I cut it.  These onions need to dry more or they will not store properly.  I moved these into my kitchen to be used first, just in case.
Ready to move from the garage into long term storage
I have a pantry downstairs which is underground.  It stays cool and dry all year long.  That is the perfect place for my onions.  There are a number of ways to store onions.  Some people use bins with lots of small holes to allow for air circulation.  Some people encase the onions in panty hose, knotting between the onions then cutting off onions as needed.

I use this hanging mesh toy storage thingee I purchased from IKEA years ago. 

I put the onions in a single layer in each level of the mess hanging thingee (what is this thing called anyway).  The mesh allows for sufficient air circulation around the onions. 
I check the onions periodically to look for any that are getting soft, smell bad, or have sprouted. Remove any of those types of onions immediately to keep the rest of the onions from going bad.

Keep in mind that home grown onions will not store as long as grocery store onions because grocery store onions are sprayed with a sprout inhibitor right before they are cured.  Homegrown onions often try to sprout before the next year's onion crop is ready.  You can eat sprouted onions.  Just don't leave sprouted onions to set with the rest of the storage onions too long.

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2 comments:

  1. That's really interesting. I've never grown onions before.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Jennifer you should give it a try next spring. They are super easy to grow and no bugs or animals try to eat them making them even easier to grow.

    ReplyDelete

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