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Onions


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Onions



Onions

CULTURE: If your field or garden has full sun and is fertile and well-drained (no standing water after heavy rain) you can grow large, sound onions from seed. The best crops are grown in humus-rich sands, light loams, or high organic matter peat and "muck" soils. Onions from seeds or plants are generally better than set-grown onions.
DIRECT SEEDING: In April or early May or as soon as the soil can be prepared in early spring, sow in a 2" wide band, about 2 seeds/in., 1/4- 1/2" deep, rows 12-18" apart. Thin to 1 1/2-2" apart for highest yields on fertile soil. Thin to 3-4" apart for larger onions and 4" apart for the "sweet mild" type.
TRANSPLANTING: For varieties of the "sweet mild" class, and for the storage type in extremely short season areas, sow seeds indoors in flats in late February to mid-March. Broadcast 1/2" apart and cover 1/4". Tops may be clipped to 5" tall. Transplant to the garden 4" apart, or sow 5 seeds in each cell of 1-1 1/2" diameter plug trays, thinning to 3 per cell. Transplant each cell 6" apart.
CULTIVATION: Keep onions well weeded with shallow cultivation.
WATER: Onions are shallow rooted and grow best with at least an inch per week of rain or irrigation.
DISEASES: Set-grown onions are more prone to disease than seed-grown onions. If you grow from both sets and seeds, plant in different locations to help avoid any disease spreading to the seed-grown crop.
HARVEST: When onions have begun to develop skins and tops are falling over, pull and sun-cure at least a week before removing tops.
STORAGE: When dry, clip off tops and store in onion bags or shallow boxes at near freezing and 65-70% humidity.
DAY LENGTH: Onion varieties differ in the length of day required to make a bulb. Those requiring fewer daylight hours are grown in the South where the daylight period during summer is shorter than in the North. Most of our varieties are of the "medium" or "long-day" type, and if they are grown in the South, the days there are too short to initiate good bulb development. Refer to "Adaptation" in each variety description for details.
DAYS TO MATURITY: From direct seeding; subtract 10-15 days if transplants are used.
AVG. DIRECT SEEDING RATE: 325'/oz., 3 oz./1000', 5 1/2 lb./acre at 20 seeds/ft., in rows 18" apart.
TRANSPLANTS: Avg. 4,600 plants/oz., 73,500/lb.
GRADED SEEDS: Standard on all varieties.
SEED SPECS: SEEDS/LB.: 95,000-125,000 (avg. 105,000).
PACKET: 2 gm. (avg. 460 seeds) sows 30' or makes 265 plants.


Onions


THE BENEFITS OF ONIONS

The onion is a member of the lily family, a close relation of garlic. It is often called the "king of vegetables" because of its pungent taste.

There are many varieties of the onionwhite, yellow, red and green globes. They also differ in size, color and taste. The smaller onions come in many varieties such as the green onion, or scallion which includes chives, leeks and shallots.

The smaller the onions, the more pungent they are. They are the ones that make your eyes water when you cut them, when the organic sulphur is released.



Nutritional Benefits

There is considerable variation in composition between different varieties and they also vary with the stage of maturity and the length of storage.

Onion is a powerful anti-septic that is rich in vitamins A, B and C. It is a potent source of folic acid, calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, chromium, iron and dietary fiber.

Health Benefits

Ancient records reveal that onions have been used as far back as 4000 B.C. as a cure-all for many illnesses. In WW II, the vapors of onion paste was used to reduce the pain and accelerated the healing of soldiers' wounds.

Even now, we find many medicinal properties from this dynamite bulb:

Anemia:The high content of iron in onion makes it beneficial for the treatment of anemia.

Anti-coagulant: Just by eating half a medium raw onion daily can significantly lower cholesterol and help prevent heart attacks.

Anti-inflammatory: The anti-inflammatory agents in onion are useful in reducing the symptoms of inflammatory conditions such as arthritis and gout.

Anti-septic:Fights infection bacteria, including E.coli and salmonella, and is effective against tuberculosis and infections of the urinary tract, such as cystitis.

Blood pressure:Whether you eat it raw or cooked, onions help to lower blood pressure naturally. It also thins the blood, dissolve blood clots and clear the blood of unhealthy fats.

Cholesterol: Eating half a medium raw onion daily significantly helps to correct thrombosis, lower the LDL cholesterol and prevents heart attacks.

Colon cancer, prevention: Fructo-oligosaccharides in onions stimulate the growth of good bacteria in the colon and help reduce the risk of tumors developing in the colon.

Constipation and flatulence: Add plenty onion in your cooking to help relieve chronic constipation and flatulence.

Diabetes:Chromium in onion helps diabetics' cells respond appropriately to bringing down the insulin level and improve glucose tolerance.

Diuretic and blood cleansing: Help counter fluid retention, urinary gravel, arthritis and gout.

Ear disorder:In some culture, cotton wool is dipped into onion juice and put into the ear to stop ringing in the ear.

Hair loss:A study has shown that applying onion juice on scalp twice a week for 2 months will cause hair regrowth. Definitely cost much less that those hair tonic.

Immune booster: The pungency increases blood circulation and causes sweating. Useful in cold weather to ward off infection, reduce fever and sweat out colds and flu.

Osteoporosis: A compound has recently been identified in onions that prevents the, activities of breaking down bone. Especially beneficial for women who are at risk for osteoporosis as they go through menopause.

Respiratory: Mix equal amounts of onion juice and honey and take 3-4 teaspoons of this mixture daily. It helps liquefy mucus and prevents its further formation. It is also one of the best preventive potion against common cold.

Sexualdebility: Onion is a potent aphrodisiac and stands second only to garlic. For this, the white variety is most effective.

Urinary tract infection: Boil some onion in water till half of the water evaporated. Sieve the onion water, leave to cool and drink. The anti-bacterial properties help to relieve the burning sensation in urination.