CURING ONIONS BEFORE PUTTING THEM IN STORAGE – 4th wk in August 2014

Once the harvest-ready onions have been lifted, the damp soil needs a chance to dry off. The skin of the onions also need to dry and harden before they can be safely stored. In fine weather, the lifted onions are often just left on top of the soil for this ‘curing process’ which takes place over a week or so.

Here in Tacumshin, under pressure from young nieces and nephews, a cob oven for cooking pizzas has been built under an open and airy DIY flat roof. The paving slab floor around the cob oven is now an ideal place to lay out the onions open to sun and wind, but sheltered from the odd rain shower.

After a week or so of ‘curing’, one can rub off the dried soil from each onion, pick out any imperfect onions for immediate use and store the rest. Not sure if I’ll have time to plait all 400 onions so that they can

Curing onion harvest,  Jet Set (early), Red Baron (red) and Sturon (good storage onion) in airy dry sunny location  around cob oven.

Curing onion harvest, Jet Set (early), Red Baron (red) and Sturon (good storage onion) in airy dry sunny location around cob oven.

hang attractively in a cool dark shed. However, the main requirement is a dry well ventilated cool place. Onion bags and racks will be useful to help store this precious harvest. I know one man who stores his home grown onions under his bed!

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