I harvested my onions around a week ago and they have been drying out on the floor of the outhouse ever since. There are fewer onions than last year. I decided not to plant so many this year because we couldn’t eat all of last year’s onions before they started to rot and so consequently a lot of them went to waste – which is heartbreaking after you have put in so much effort. So this year I planted a few super early ones (Radar) which did very well, then around 20 white onions and another 10-12 red onions (Red Baron). I also planted around 8-9 sets of shallots which, despite the foul weather, have harvested very well (even if some of them are a little small).
Onions are a staple crop of the allotmenteer. They’re like potatoes – you kind of have to grow them just because they’re pretty easy and everyone else does it. I must admit I’m hard pressed to tell the difference in taste between a store-bought onion and my own. Maybe my taste buds are faulty but I really can’t! Some would say, ‘well what’s the point in growing them if you can buy the same thing in the shops?’ But of course it’s the sense of achievement that growing them gives you. With all that weeding, feeding, harvesting, drying, hanging, onions are time intensive when you really think about it. But there’s nothing more satisfying than making French onion soup with ‘my own onions’ and bringing it to the dinner table with a flourish – ta-da! It makes all the hard work worthwhile.