If you are not tired of my garden in mid-April tour yet, here is the third instalment - the onion family.
This season I am making a serious attempt at growing garlic. I have tried growing garlic before, but I am not sure I have ever been focused enough in the past to get a result I was happy with. This year I am trying Monaro Purple which are reputedly suitable for colder climates. I wonder what their origin is - the Monaro Plain of NSW? They look pretty good so far, I am certain every bulb I put in has come up.
They are Rocambole-style garlic which are hardnecks. The neighbours up the track had great success with this variety last year and so I am taking their lead. It is of course possible that it was their gardening skills rather than the variety of garlic that made the difference, but for now I am placing faith in the variety and a liberal dash of lime.
I love leeks, really love them. I also like how they look in the bed and love their huge round flower heads. These leeks I bought in punnet form, but I have another row in which is much less developed that have been raised from seed.
I always put leeks in quite close together, thinning out by pulling some quite young. On the right of the leeks you can see some parsnips on the way.
We seem to eat a lot of spring onions so I have a lot in. They are mostly in pots but there are some in the beds. These have all been raised from seed. Again, like the leeks, I tend to plant densely.
Years ago, when I lived in Britain, I grew shallots, red and brown ones and they were heavenly! Why it has taken me so long to grow them again I don't know. It might have had something to do with space but now I have lots of space there is little excuse.
I haven't put these in yet as you can see. I intend to plant them in a couple of weeks, in the meantime I have prepared a bed for them and am asking the chooky girls to help out. This morning they ate a lot of slaters that were hiding in the parts of the bed that had lots of straw. They have done a fair bit of scratching around already.
(Apologies for the shadow of the photographer in the photo.)
Other oniony things
I also have chives and garlic chives in pots but I kind of call these things 'herbs'.
Yes, hmmm. You will have noticed that I don't have any onions in. To be honest, I am a little scared of growing onions. Scared is perhaps an exaggeration, I think I don't like the idea of tying up a big area of a bed when I might be unsuccessful. If I think growing garlic is a challenge, I suspect growing onions is even harder. If you have any tips for success with onions (and garlic for that matter), It will be greatly appreciated. Perhaps I will take onions on next year.