What is Shallots?
Shallots (Allium cepa var. aggregatum) are also known as golden shallot, French shallot, eschallot, echalotte. It is part of the Alliaceae which is the onion family and originated from Asia and the Middle East. Some commonly grown varieties are white, red, golden, pink, and purple. Before planting your shallots you need to prepare your soil a few months before planting. Shallots require a full sun position with well drained rich loamy soil. They don’t like acidic soil so use a pH checker and use lime if the soil is too acidic. Do not add manure to the soil as this will make the soil more acidic. The pH level should be around 6 to 6.5. In cooler areas planting time is late Winter or early Spring while in warmer climates planting should be done around Autumn. Do not plant the bulbs too deeply, push them into the soil so the pointed tops are still visible. Harvesting time is Autumn the following year. It is done before they start to flower, when the tops of the plant begin to fall over. Remove the bulbs carefully before cleaning them and leaving in a cool, dry place. Save some good sized bulbs for planting in Winter again. It is important that the bulbs are lifted when the tops begin to fall over because they are getting ready to start the cycle again and will cause the bulb size to decrease.
Benefits of Growing Shallots
The bulbs are a culinary onion with a superb mild flavour. They can be eaten raw, boiled, pickled, baked, or fried. Shallots are great for making your own pickled onions and a range of sauces and can be used in place of normal onions for a milder taste. They contain vitamins A, C and folate and a variety of minerals such as potassium, manganese, calcium and iron. Shallots are long keeping and will store for up to 12 months
How to Grow Shallots
Cool, temperate, arid, semi arid.
Height: 40-60cm, Width: 20cm
When To Plant Shallots
Plant in Winter to early Spring.
A rich loam soil is required for a good crop. Enrich soil with low nitrogen fertilisers and lime a few months before planting time. Do not use manure as this will lower the pH of the soil.
How To Plant Shallots
Plant in full sun, 20cm apart. Do not plant the bulbs too deeply; push them into the soil so the tops are still visible.
Shallots Plant Care
Normal watering is required during dry periods.