Onions In Your Bucket Garden
Growing onions in containers allows you to grow onions indoors or in a small space in your yard. You need to know that the way how to grow onions in container gardens is much like growing onions in the ground. You need good soil, adequate drainage, good fertilizer and plenty of light. Truly, the sole difference between growing onions in the ground and growing onions in containers is choosing the container you will grow them in.
Because you need several onions planted to get a decent crop, a trying to grow onions in containers that are only 5” or 6” wide would be unsuitable at best. If you decide to grow onions in containers, then by all means choose a large mouthed pot that is at least 10” in depth deep, but should be several feet wide so that you will be able to plant enough onions to make it worth your while. A small wading pool is excellent or a wash tub or an old bath tub, all are great for growing onions. A great many people have success growing onions in a tub. Because plastic tubs are much cheaper than a comparable sized pot, growing onions in a tub is economical and efficient. You will need to drill or cut several drainage holes into the tub. I suggest doing this at the bottom rim but on the side about ½” above the bottom lip. You can grow onions in 5-gal. buckets but you need to know that you can only grow 3-4 onions per bucket because onions need at least 3” of space around them to grow properly.
Whether you grow onions in a tub or in pots, it is essential that the onions be set in a container somewhere that gets 6-7 hours of daylight. If you are growing indoor onions and do not have a location with adequate sunlight, you can supplement the light with fluorescent bulbs set close to the onions. Using a shop light on an adjustable chain is an excellent grow-light solution for folks who growing onions indoors.
Irrigation is essential to growing onions in container gardens because your container onions will have no access to naturally stored rainfall from surrounding soil. Onions grown in containers will need at least 2”–3” of water a week or even more in hot weather. Check your onions daily and if the top of the soil is dry to the touch, give them some water.
Just because you have limited space does not mean that you need to limit what you grow. Growing indoor onions or growing onions in a tub or bucket on your patio is fun and it is easy. Now that you know how to grow onions in container gardens, you have no excuse not to do so…!
Copyright © 2012 Donald R Houston, PhD. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without the author's consent.