Shallots

Shallots

The unique flavour of shallots makes them a favourite for pickling and cooing. This vegetable is available in various varieties in different shapes and sizes. They are not demanding and just need fertile and well-drained soil for better growth. 

Sowing

Shallots are easy to grow both from sets or seeds. However, sets are most common among gardeners because of their quick-growing nature. Besides, sets are less prone to diseases and pests. 

Seeds are not really suitable for gardens and are better suited to mechanical cultivation. 

Here are some instructions to sow the shallots

  • Don’t forget to add two bucketfuls of garden compost or manure to your soil before planting the shallots. 
  • Add general purpose fertilizer after that. 
  • Suppress the weeds by planting through a black weed-suppressing membrane.
  • Ensure a distance of 10 inches between shallot sets.
  • Ensure that rows are 16 inches apart.
  • Make sure only tips are visible through the soil.
  • Firm the soil surrounding the plants after you have planted them.
  • Cover the plants with fleece to prevent the birds from lifting the sets.

On the contrary, if you want to sow shallots seeds, follow these tips:

  • Sow shallots seeds from March to April.
  • Sow the seeds in a depth of 0.5 inches.
  • Ensure to leave a distance of 30 cm between the rows.
  • Thin the seedlings to ensure that they are 1-3 inches apart.

Growing

  • Water the plants in dry spells.
  • Trim the flower spikes as soon as they appear.

Planting

Here are some instructions to plant the shallots

  • Don’t forget to add garden compost or manure before planting the shallots. 
  • Rake them in general-purpose fertilizer after that. 
  • Ensure a distance of 10 inches between shallot sets.
  • Ensure that rows are 16 inches apart.
  • Make sure only the tips are visible through the soil.
  • Firm the soil surrounding the plants after you have planted them.
  • Cover the plants with fleece to prevent the birds from lifting the sets
  • Suppress the weeds by planting through a black weed-suppressing membrane.

Harvesting

July or August is the time to harvest your shallots. It’s the time when the foliage turns yellow and indicates that they are ready to harvest. You can lift the bub clusters manually or by using a hand fork. 

You can eat them immediately. You can also dry and store shallots for up to 6-8 months. Here’s the process to keep the bulbs

  • Spread the bulbs outdoors on a slatted wooden tray or wire rack. 
  • Allow these bulbs to dry under the sun. However, if the weather is not good, you can also dry them in the well-ventilated greenhouse. 
  • Dispose of the dried foliage.
  • Store the bulbs in trays or net bags in a cool, well-ventilated and frost-free location. Make sure the place where you’re storing the shallots is getting enough light; otherwise, sprouting will occur.
shallots

Common problems

Onion white rot

It’s a fungus born in soil. It causes the foliage yellowing and wilting. Not only this, but it also causes damage to the bulb beneath the earth and rots the roots.  

Firstly, it will appear as fluffy white fungus on the bulb base. Afterwards, it turns into round and black structures.  

Remedy

Onion white rot can’t be cured chemically. So the best tip to avoid white rot is to prevent the transportation of cloves in contaminated soil. Moreover, you have to take special care where cross-contamination is frequent.  

Onion downy mildew

It is also a fungal disease that infects bulbs and foliage. The most common behind its spread is damp conditions.

Remedy    

  • Ensure plenty of light and ventilation at the planting space
  • Remove the weeds regularly.
  • Don’t water overhead.
  • Remove the infected leaves.

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08/06/2021 | Vegetables | 0 Comments

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