Growing Onions in Minnesota Home Gardens

Onions (Allium cepa L.) are related to garlic, chives, leeks, and shallots. Storage onions grown in Minnesota generally are long-day types that require 14 or more hours of daylight to form bulbs. Overcast skies and cool temperatures during the growing season will delay bulb formation. Sweet or mild onions are "short day" onions, and although they can be grown in Minnesota, they will generally develop small bulbs. There are also bunching or scallion types grown for their green and white stems that do not form bulbs. Egyptian "walking" onions are perennial, and produce clumps of bulbs. When the clump becomes heavy, it collapses and the bulbs form roots where they land. They are also grown mainly for their edible stems. All onions require full sun for optimal growth.


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