Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Alliums on the up!

You may have seen my Harvest Monday post yesterday. If you did, you will know that I decided that after having been growing for 6 months (yes, SIX months), these Spring Onions were finally worth using.  They are of the variety "White Lisbon Winter Hardy", and were sown on 5th August 2012.

The seeds were part of a collection that came as a freebie with a magazine, so I didn't buy them as such. In retrospect I hardly think it would be worth spending money on something like this. As far as VSR goes, they score dreadfully badly. They have occupied space for a huge amount of time, and I can buy a bunch of Spring Onions any time I like for a very small amount of money (e.g. 79p in Sainsbury's right now). Furthermore, mine can hardly be considered a premium product - as seen here:

In their defence I have to say that these onions were grown in a container, so were not taking up space that I needed for something else, and if I had not grown them I would not have been growing anything else in that container. Perhaps they would have done better under cover, but since their name includes the words "Winter Hardy" I thought they would be OK out in the open.  As it happens, I have never had much success with Spring Onions of any sort. I think maybe the conditions in my garden just don't suit them.

Meanwhile, in the coldframe, their cousins the Chives are just beginning to wake up after their Winter sleep. Should have put the Spring Onions in there too, I think.

The Wild Garlic that I brought back from my MIL's place last year is just putting up its first shoots. I don't expect much this year, but I'm hoping to establish a patch of the stuff, so I hope they will prove to be prolific. For some time now I have been trying to think of a place where genuinely wild Wild Garlic grows, so that I could go and get a "cutting", but I couldn't think of anywhere. Anyway, it's irrelevant now.

Does anyone else cook with Wild Garlic? Do you have any recipes that include it? If you do, I'd be interested to hear from you.

I haven't planted my shallots yet, because I think it is still too cold. We have had below-zero night-time temperatures several times recently, and even the day-time temperatures are still in single figures, so I think I'll wait a bit longer. However, one of them has decided that it's not going to wait for me to plant it before it starts producing leaves:


  1. I grow White Lisbon spring onions in containers, and they usually do well for me. Perhaps they were sown a little late in the year, then wouldn't have got going again until we have some warmer weather. Did you try growing them earlier in the year?

  2. WE seem to have the same trouble as you with spring onions. They used to do OK but we've tried all sorts of varieties to no avail - the knack has deserted us

  3. I've never done well with spring onions either...

    Interesting to see you are growing wild garlic in a not so wild environment. Would love to try something similar myself!!


  4. In our motorhome magazine this month there is an article on Free Food For The Wild Heart and wild garlic is featured.If you go to outandaboutlive.co.uk/information/motorhome-recipes,the lady who has done the article is Angela Chester and she gives various recipes.Shame about the onions

  5. I prepare meals with wild garlic! I love it for its smell because it's not so intensive as the smell of a regular garlic and it reminds me of fresh green onions :)
    Do you eat flowers too? I do, because when the wild garlic begins to flower the leaves become stringy - so you can eat flowers :)

    I always add wild garlic to salads, sandwiches, cottage cheese but I've never cooked it yet; I always use it fresh. I like to mix cottage cheese with fresh wild garlic and radishes and seasonings. Then I use it as a bread spread. It's simple and very tasty.
    Tomorrow I'm going to see my garden, so I'll check my garlic.

  6. I think you have done very well to grow anything out in the elements during your winter. I have grown white lisborne spring onions and they did OK but we are generally in double figures temperature wise. I think you would have blitzed it in the cold frame.

  7. Onions grown from seeds grow very slowly for me too. To make the best use of my space, I plant onions, radishes (the red round kind), and baby carrots 'Little Fingers' all together. I don't space them out, just sprinkle the seeds around in a large container. The radishes mature quickly so a person feels they are getting some use out of the space. As the radishes are pulled out there is more room for the carrots and onions to grow.
    I have onion seeds and onion bulbs to plant this Spring, hopefully this week.
    Happy Gardening!
    Lea's Menagerie

  8. I usually plant my onion starts out after about two months of growing them. They are such slow growers. Most of my plants get about three weeks indoors before I put them out.


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