A Complete Guide on How to Successfully Grow Shallots in Your Home Garden

A Complete Guide on How to Successfully Grow Shallots in Your Home Garden

If you’re a gardener looking to add a flavorful and versatile member to your vegetable garden, look no further than shallots. Shallots are a type of onion that are known for their mild, yet distinct flavor. They are easy to grow and can be harvested multiple times throughout the year. In this article, we will discuss the steps to successfully grow shallots in your garden.

First and foremost, it’s important to select a sunny spot in your garden for planting shallots. They thrive in full sunlight and well-drained soil. Shallots also require a fertile soil, so it is recommended to add compost or organic fertilizer to the soil before planting. This will provide the necessary nutrients for the shallots to grow.

When it comes to planting, shallots can be grown from seeds or sets. Sets are small bulbs that are often used for planting shallots. They are easy to handle and produce a more consistent crop. To begin planting, loosen the soil and create small furrows. Place the shallot sets with the pointed end facing up and cover them with soil. Space the sets about 6 inches apart to allow room for growth.

Once the shallots sprout, it’s important to keep the garden bed weed-free. Common weeds can compete with shallots for nutrients and reduce productivity. Hand-weeding is recommended to avoid damaging the shallow roots of the shallots. Additionally, watering the shallots regularly is crucial for healthy foliage and bulb development.

As the shallots grow, you may notice the foliage turning yellow in late July or early August. This is a natural process and a sign that the shallots are almost ready for harvesting. When the foliage begins to dry up and fall over, it’s time to harvest the shallots. To do this, gently loosen the soil around the bulbs and carefully lift them out of the ground. Allow the shallots to dry in a warm, well-ventilated area for a week or two before storing them.

In conclusion, growing shallots in your garden can be a rewarding experience for any gardener. With proper care and attention, you can enjoy a bountiful harvest of these flavorful and versatile bulbs. Whether you use them fresh in your cooking or store them for later use, shallots are a great addition to any home garden. If you have any questions or need further assistance, consult your local university extension office or a knowledgeable gardener for advice.


– University Extension Office

– Gardening Tips and Tricks

When to Harvest Shallots – Garden Tips 2023

Harvesting shallots is an important part of growing these tasty vegetables. Knowing when to harvest shallots can greatly affect their flavor and quality. Shallots are typically ready to harvest in mid-July, but this can vary depending on the specific variety and growing conditions involved.

Frequent consideration should be given to the following facts when determining the optimal time for harvesting shallots. Shallots are usually planted in the spring and take around 90 to 120 days to mature. They are typically less productive in colder areas, as they prefer warm temperature and full sunlight to thrive.

When the shallot bulbs have reached a good size, typically around 1-2 inches in depth, and the foliage begins to turn yellow and die back, this is a good indication that the shallots are ready for harvest. In addition, the foliage can be gently lifted to check the bulb size and development. If the bulbs are firm and the skins are papery, then they are ready for harvest.

To harvest shallots, simply dig around the bulbs with a garden fork or spade, taking care not to damage them. Loosen the soil gently and lift the shallots from the ground. If the weather is dry, the soil can be watered before harvesting to facilitate the ease of removal.

Once harvested, shallots should be handled with care to ensure their longevity and flavor. Remove any excess soil and trim off the foliage, leaving about an inch attached to each bulb. Shallots can be cured and dried by placing them in a dry, well-ventilated area for a few weeks. After curing, shallots can be stored in a cool, dry, and dark place for several months.

By mastering the art of harvesting shallots, you can enjoy the natural sweetness and flavor they bring to your culinary dishes. Whether planted from seed or from sets, shallots are a common addition to gardens. They are a great plant to grow and store for the following winters and are a popular choice for propagating new shallots. With proper spacing and timely fertilization, you can ensure a bountiful harvest in 2023.

What time of year are shallots ready?

Shallots are a delicious and versatile vegetable that can be grown in your garden with a little bit of care and patience. Understanding the right time to harvest them is crucial to ensure you get the best flavor and quality.

Shallots are ready to harvest when the foliage begins to turn yellow and starts to die back. This usually occurs in late summer or early fall, depending on your growing zone. It’s important to wait until the foliage has completely died back before harvesting to allow the bulbs to fully mature.

Harvesting shallots at the right time is crucial because it affects their flavor and storage life. If you harvest them too early, the flavor may be milder and the bulbs may not store as well. On the other hand, leaving them in the ground for too long can result in sprouting or rotten bulbs.

To harvest shallots, use a shovel or garden fork to carefully lift the bulbs out of the ground. Be gentle to avoid damaging the bulbs and separate them from the foliage. Once the bulbs are lifted, brush off any excess soil and let them cure in a warm, dry area for a few days. Curing helps the skins to dry and allows the flavors to develop fully.

After curing, store shallots in a cool, dry place with good ventilation. They can be stored for several months if properly cured and stored. Using a mesh bag or a well-ventilated container helps prevent moisture buildup and prolongs their shelf life.

In areas with mild winters, shallots can be overwintered in the garden. Simply leave them in the ground and they will regrow in the spring. However, in colder areas where the ground freezes deeply, it’s better to harvest them and store them indoors.

Shallots are a great addition to many dishes, providing a subtle and sweet onion flavor. They can be used in salads, soups, stir-fries, and many other recipes. Their unique flavor and versatility make them a popular choice for many cooks.

Moreover, growing your own shallots allows you to have a fresh supply of this tasty vegetable, free from any pesticides or chemicals. Plus, there’s the satisfaction of knowing that you’ve grown your own food!

In conclusion, knowing when to harvest shallots is essential for their flavor, storage, and overall success. Wait until the foliage has yellowed and died back, then lift the bulbs and cure them before storing. Follow these tips, and soon you’ll be enjoying the delicious taste of homegrown shallots in your favorite recipes!

How do you know when your shallots are ready to harvest

When it comes to growing shallots in your garden, knowing when they are ready to harvest is crucial in order to get the best yield from your plants. Several factors can help you determine the optimum time for harvesting your shallots.

  • Check the skins: Fully mature shallot bulbs will have dry and papery skins. If the skins are still green and moist, it is an indication that the bulbs are not ready for harvesting.
  • Inspect for damage: Examine the bulbs for any signs of damage, such as cuts, bruises, or disease. Damaged bulbs should be discarded to prevent the spread of pests and diseases.
  • Consider storage: If you plan to store your harvested shallots, it is best to harvest them when they are fully mature. Immature shallots have a shorter shelf life and may not store well.
  • Observe the plants: As shallots approach maturity, the foliage will start to turn yellow and eventually die back. This is a clear sign that the bulbs are ready for harvesting.
  • Watch for emergence: Shallots grow in clusters, with several bulbs emerging from a single planted bulb. When most of the bulbs in a cluster have emerged from the soil, it is an indication that they are ready to be harvested.
  • Beware of weeds: Weeds can hinder the growth of shallots and compete for nutrients. If you notice a significant growth of weeds around your shallot plants, it may be a sign that the bulbs are ready to be harvested.
  • Consider the growing degree days: Shallots generally take around 120 to 150 growing degree days (GDD) to mature. Keeping track of the GDD can help you estimate when your shallots are likely to be ready for harvest.
  • Know your varieties: Different varieties of shallots may have different maturity dates. Some varieties may be ready to harvest earlier, while others may take longer. Check the specific information for the variety you are growing.

Once you have determined that your shallots are ready for harvest, it is important to handle them with care. Gently dig them out of the soil using a digging fork or shovel, being careful not to damage the bulbs. Brush off any excess soil and allow the shallots to cure in a warm, dry location for about two weeks. This curing process helps to further dry the skins and improve their storage qualities.

Remember to rotate your shallots in your garden bed to prevent the buildup of pests and diseases. Separate the bulbs and replant the largest ones for the next growing season. Frequently asked questions related to the care, overwintering, propagating, and harvesting of shallots can be found in gardening forums or by consulting experts.

In conclusion, knowing when your shallots are ready to harvest is crucial for maximizing their flavor and storage qualities. By considering factors such as the condition of the skins, damage, storage plans, plant observations, emergence of bulbs, weed growth, growing degree days, and variety maturity dates, you can ensure a successful harvest of these delicious and versatile vegetables.

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Dr Heidi Parkes

By Dr Heidi Parkes

Senior Information Extension Officer QLD Dept of Agriculture & Fisheries.