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Braiding Onions

Submitted by: runningtrails on September 10, 2011
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Braiding Onions

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I grew onions this year! Lots of big beautiful onions for the first time! It is not, however, the first time I have planted onions, just the first time they actually grew into onions. Those are my onions in the picture above! Next year I am planting a …

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I grew onions this year! Lots of big beautiful onions for the first time! It is not, however, the first time I have planted onions, just the first time they actually grew into onions. Those are my onions in the picture above! Next year I am planting a lot more. I didn’t grow enough to last us a year because I wasn’t sure they would grow well this time and I didn’t want to waste the space.

Since I had the onions and the cold cellar with hooks in the ceiling, I learned to braid them. I love the look of hanging onions and garlic. I’d like to hang them in the kitchen, but they wouldn’t keep long in that warmth. After they are cured and dried well, they have to be kept cold. The cellar might work. This year will be the test.

It took me awhile to get the hang of braiding onions. It’s not something one can just sit down and do. I read a lot of sites online that had pictures and instructions, but I still couldn’t get it to work. Then one day it just hit me, I had an Aha! moment. They are braided from the bottom up, not the top down! From that point on I had it. No one told me that! All those sites I looked at never said to start at the bottom of the braid and go up!

p2

After that it went fast. I’m used to putting a French braid in my hair and this works the same way, going in the opposite direction. It has to be quite a bit tighter, however, to hold. I had to repeat it a few times to get it tight enough to hold the onions in place. If I braided my hair that tight, I’d have a headache in no time! This one on the left is too loose and came apart.

The top pic is a final tight braid but could be even tighter. I think that part takes some practice. I have to leave the tops longer next year too. I trimmed them back a bit and I shouldn’t have.

I have learned a new skill! I will have to go back and read this post before starting next year. I will have forgotten the key elements by that time, I’m sure. Next year I will do better and have a lot more onions to braid, as well!

Sheryl – Runningtrails blogs at Providence Acres Farm.

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Comments

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  1. 9-10
    7:36
    am

    I also love the look of braided onions. I’ve got some curing in the garage right now. Guess what I’m going to try when they’re ready? Isn’t learning something new fun?

  2. 9-10
    1:21
    pm

    Looks great! Now tell me what your trick is to get them to grow to full size!

  3. 9-10
    2:41
    pm

    I started with sets, not seeds, so they didn’t have that far to go. Very loose, well dug, slightly sandy, well draining soil with old manure dug in at planting time. That’s what I did.

    Normally I have clay loam soil but I planted these at the edge of the fill put in for the garage, sort of half drt, half sandy gravel fill with manure dug in. I will have to remember to dig in a small amount of sand with the manure in the onion rows in the regular garden next year.

    Oh, and this year I weeded them for a change 🙂

  4. 2-2
    4:06
    pm

    Sheryl,
    Love your braided onions, and I agree the look is way cool. Just going to pass you a tip I learned from a friend of mine if you are fortunate enough to grow more onions than you feel like braiding in future and need to store a bunch next year. He brought back a #50 bag of Vidalias one year after a huntin trip and started asking everyones wife for their panty hose that was ready to be discarded. I asked, “what in the world for”? Neat old trick he says. You tie off the bottom of the leg, put in an onion, tie it off, put in another onion and so forth. Then you hang just like you would the braided ones. When you need an onion, “you cut er loose”. I don’t know how many of your friends might wear hose but I bet you could round up some at church! Meanwhile, that’s a beautiful bunch of onions! I might have to try growing some myself.
    L

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