why do red onions bolt?

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big green bloke

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why do red onions bolt?
« on: May 05, 2007, 12:12 »
some of my red onions have bolted about a quarter any hints on how to stop it happening yours big green bloke
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John

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why do red onions bolt?
« Reply #1 on: May 05, 2007, 12:25 »
I've got the same with my Japanese onions. The only thing I can think is that the weather isn't helping. It's been so unseasonably warm.

I cut off the flowering stems as they appear and use those onions first as they don't store well.
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Aidy

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why do red onions bolt?
« Reply #2 on: May 05, 2007, 15:45 »
Think your right there John, its been so dry. Some of my cabbages were starting to head up nicely then bag, just went to seed almost over night.
Punk isn't dead...it's underground where it belongs. If it comes to the surface it's no longer punk...it's Green Day!

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Trillium

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why do red onions bolt?
« Reply #3 on: May 05, 2007, 21:34 »
You've got it, John. The early heat and dryness signals the plant to go to seed rather than to grow. Like you, I simply cut off the flowering stem as early as possible and use that onion first. Happens with all the onions, not just reds.

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waddecar

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why do red onions bolt?
« Reply #4 on: May 06, 2007, 10:30 »
I changed to autumn sown sets 3 years ago and susceptibility to bolting is much reduced. So far this year no reds have bolted and only 2 yellow ( out of about 80 of each). Also I'll be able to lift them early July and get some late French beans in their place.

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WG.

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why do red onions bolt?
« Reply #5 on: May 06, 2007, 10:36 »
I also plant onion sets in autumn but can only ever find the Japanese varieties.  My problem is that around half of them seem to die.

Which varieties do you autumn-plant please?  Do you get good survival rates?

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waddecar

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why do red onions bolt?
« Reply #6 on: May 07, 2007, 16:11 »
I get my autumn sets from Edwin Tuckers, but Marshalls also do them I believe. Yellow variety is "Radar" and red variety is "Electric". I am also trying shallot "Echalote Grise" from an autumn planting for the first time this year- they are going well so far.

Survival rates for yellows has been about 100% every year, the reds seem to be prone to fungal attack so I usually discard a fair few every year before planting. In fact this year I advised Tuckers of the fungal incidence and they refunded the cost. Those that are planted seem to have good survival rates too - and the  red bulbs are so small that you get around 100+ I guess in 250gms so discarding a few is no hardship.

I garden on the coast so although wind and rain is a problem in winter we do not get severe frosts. Oh and I use raised beds so no waterlogging.

Hope this helps

Brian

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WG.

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WGfindit
« Reply #7 on: May 07, 2007, 18:09 »
Fantastic Brian, thank you for the comprehensive reply.

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David.

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why do red onions bolt?
« Reply #8 on: May 08, 2007, 16:27 »
Picked the first 2 seed heads off my electric reds today. I leave the stem so I know which ones to use first. No problem with the Radars (yet).



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