I love to use chopped green onions as topping for a lot of my home-cooked meals. Not only do they perk up the flavor of most dishes, they also are a perfect garnish for chicken soup, pork stews, noodles and fried rice. Whenever I buy a whole bunch of green onions from the grocery, I only get to use half of it. The rest will end up wilted and forgotten in the refrigerator. For this reason, I decided to grow my own green onions so I could harvest them only as needed.
So why buy when you can easily grow green onions at home?
They’re very easy to grow and are ideal for growing in containers, whether indoors or outdoors. Here are a few urban gardening tips on how to plant green onions at home.
How to Propagate Green Onions
There are two ways to propagate green onions. One is through seeds which was what I did for my organic herb garden. The tiny black seeds can be sown directly into the potting mix and they will germinate in about 7-10 days. Another way is through the stalks or onion bulbs. When buying from the market store, choose a healthy bundle with some of the roots still intact. Cut and use the upper green part for cooking, leaving about an inch and a half of root portion. Plant this by burying about an inch of the roots into a well draining soil or potting mix.
Maintaining Green Onions
Green onions are fairly easy to maintain. They grow well indoors or outdoors in full or partial sun. Make sure they get at least 4 hours of sunlight daily. When growing in containers, use a well draining soil or potting mix.
Watering is needed only to keep the soil moist, but not soggy. During summer, daily watering is needed. Replenish soil nutrients with compost or organic matter at least once a month. I typically use discarded fish parts, which I chop and bury at least 3 inches into the soil. Used coffee grounds are also a great organic fertilizer. They act like a slow release fertilizer when buried or mixed with the soil.
When harvesting green onions, cut the upper green part leaving only about an inch of the portion close to the roots. They will continue to grow new stalks for future harvests.
Green onions are a good companion plant to most herbs and vegetables since they can repel most pests and are not invasive to other plants. As a companion plant, they are also known to enhance the flavor of their companion plants, like tomatoes and pepper.