Allium cepa is the scientific name for the onion, a member of the Amaryllidaceae family. It is simplest to produce onions from bulbs, however, seeds may also be used. Onions are a vital food crop in many countries throughout the globe.
Onion seed quality is affected by several variables, including environmental circumstances during the mother plant’s growth and seed development, seed placement on the plant, harvest timing, storage conditions, and pre-sowing seed treatment procedures.
You may save money and time by starting your onions from seed. Organic matter and a pH range of 6.0 to 7.8 are ideal for onion growth.
Optimum Conditions For The Germination Of Onion Seeds
Seed germination typically happens between seven to ten days, however soil temperature influences this period. Onion seeds, for example, might take up to two weeks longer to germinate in colder soil. Onion germination is sluggish at 6 to 7°C, the ideal germination temperature range is 20 to 25°C, and the maximum temperature is 40°C.
An Onion Seed’s Germination
Getting started with onion seedlings is a breeze. Fertile, well-draining soil is ideal for onions, and organic matter, such as compost, should be included in the mix. You may sow seeds right in your garden.
When starting Onion seeds inside, some individuals choose to do so. Onion seeds may be planted outside in the spring as soon as the soil in your location can be worked, which is usually in the late fall.
Plant them approximately 2.5 cm (an inch) deep in the dirt, and space them about 0.5 inches apart. Rows should be at least one and a half to two feet apart if planted in a straight line.
Although onions are a cool-season and biennial plant, they are often produced as an annual crop for economic purposes. During the first season, the Onion seeds germinate, and the plants develop vegetatively until they produce a bulb.
As low as 2°C is OK for Onion seeds to germinate, but at least 13°C is needed for 70% seedling emergence within two weeks. 20 to 25°C is the ideal temperature range for onion seed germination, sprouting, and development. In comparison to other chilly season crops, Onion plants’ early growth is sluggish owing to a lack of leaf area expansion and light interception.
The temperature has a significant impact on the germination of Onion seeds. However, soil temperature has an impact on the germination process. Onion seeds, for example, might take up to two weeks longer to germinate in colder soil. On the other side, Onion seed germination may occur in as little as four days when the soil temperature is warm enough.
Thin them out to about 3 to 4 inches apart as soon as the seedlings have a good amount of development. If the ground is not frozen, transplant onion seedlings that were planted indoors 4 to 6 weeks before the latest projected date of frost or freezing. Irrigation is needed often during the growth season for onion plants since their roots are so shallow. By late summer, when the tops begin to fall, irrigation must be halted. Now that you’ve gotten your hands on Onion seed plants, you can easily cultivate a limitless supply of Onions whenever you need them.
Seeding Techniques For Onions
Several strategies are used to increase onion production, depending on the farmer’s conditions. Among these options are:
- planting directly from a seed
- planting bulbs in the field
However, the greatest approach for high output and superior quality is to raise the plants in a nursery and then transplant them.
After six to eight weeks of growth, the seedlings should be transferred onto the main field at a spacing of 15-20 cm between lines and seven to ten centimeters between plants or seedlings. The seedlings should be transplanted early in the morning or late at night to prevent drying out, and the field should be irrigated immediately after transplantation. To distinguish seedlings that have damaged roots or illnesses, care must be exercised.
Planting Directly From A Seeds
The drilling technique is used to plant the seed at a depth of 2-3 cm in 30-cm-diameter rows with 16-20 kilogram of seed per line. This is done by thinning and filling up the gaps between plants after around six to eight weeks. Weeding has to be done every 10 days, which means additional time in the field.
Planting Bulbs In The Field
Small and medium-sized bulbs of 10 to 12 quintals are dibbled maintaining a gap of 30 cm between lines and 15 cm between bulbs in the field while planting in the field. Immediately after dibbling, irrigation may be administered.
Onion Farming Needs A Lot Of Watering
Sown During the post-planting and pre-emergence phases, which might last 10 to 20 days following the first watering, onion seed should not dry out and the soil surface should not crust. The sprinkler watering approach is the greatest method for establishing a stand of Onion seed in the summer because of the high temperatures. Onions’ thin root structure requires regular watering or rainfall to keep them healthy all season long.
Depending on the irrigation procedure, soil type, and circumstances, and weather, the quantity, and frequency of irrigation needed will vary (e.g., rainfall amounts and timing, temperature, evapotranspiration, etc.). Irrigation of onion crops is most effective when the top two feet of soil have lost 25 percent of their available moisture.
The average amount of water needed to grow an onion seed crop is 25 to 35 inches. With an efficacy of 70% to 80%, water applications of 35 to 45 inches are possible. ‘ It is imperative that the frequency and duration of irrigation or an alternative mode of irrigation (e.g., drip, surge, or sprinkler) be explored if more water is being utilized than that amount.
Onion Harvesting And Harvest Yields
Onion may be harvested in 5 to 6 months, depending on the type, after being transplanted. A visual check is all that is required for bulb harvesting in the Kharif season when 50 to 75 percent of the necks have fallen off, but this only happens during the Rabi season. The procedure of harvesting involves plucking off the plants when the tips have begun to droop but are still green. Onion yields between 25 and 30 tonnes per acre. Before being stored, bulbs need to be completely cured.
For the Onion seeds to germinate, it may take a few weeks. The seedlings should be transplanted in late April or early May to a rich and well-drained place in the garden. As with sets, plant four Onions in each hole and space them approximately six inches apart.