The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

Do I need to replant Egyptian onions every year?

Egyptian onions sprouting from dormant bottom bulbsSeveral people have asked me, "Do I have to pull up my Egyptian onions and replant them every year?"  I'm not surprised that they ask --- even though Egyptian onions are perennials, the tops die back for about a month at the peak of summer and the plants look a bit dead.  But as August draws to a close, new green shoots poke up from the bulbs, proving that the onions are still very much alive.

In the past, I've yanked out the bottom bulbs during the dormant month and replanted top bulbs in new beds.  But the bottom bulbs don't rot in the compost pile, so I ended up with a lot of onions.  This year, I'm letting the Egyptian onion beds alone to see if I can treat them like true perennials.  The only problem I foresee is overcrowding --- each bottom bulb has now split into several new bulbs.  Since I yank whole plants now and then to make Butternut Squash and Egyptian Onion Soup, hopefully this overcrowding won't be an issue.

As a final note, we sold all but about a hundred of our onions, and I saved the last ones for a quick giveaway.  Just leave a comment on this post before August 29 and I'll choose one lucky winner at random to receive the last of our onion top bulbs.

Our homemade chicken waterer makes backyard chickens as easy as no-work Egyptian onions.

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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Pick me!
Comment by Jessica Tue Aug 24 10:45:51 2010
I just checked yesterday to see if I could buy some and was lamenting that I had missed out. Now I have another chance...
Comment by Lisa Tue Aug 24 15:20:54 2010
Oo! Me! Pick me!
Comment by Bladerunner Tue Aug 24 15:23:12 2010 already won the last giveaway! I never heard from you, so I figured you'd disappeared. Email me ( your mailing address and I'll put your winnings in the mail!

Everybody else, if Bladerunner emails me a mailing address, there might be a bit less than a 100 onions in this giveaway. But I'll be sure to give whatever is left to whoever wins!

Comment by anna Tue Aug 24 15:49:06 2010
o.O Im very curious about these Egyptian Onions!
Comment by Jamie Wed Aug 25 21:31:47 2010
I'd love some onions!
Comment by Meghan F Thu Aug 26 18:02:01 2010
I was glad to see you post that you are leaving your Egyptian Onions to regrow from the bulbs as perennials. I plan to do the same thing.
Comment by Kathy H. Fri Aug 27 11:48:30 2010

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