Have you discovered the joy of using fresh shallots in your gourmet cooking? If so do you frown and question why this delicious gourmet vegetable is so expensive?
Advantages of Growing Fresh Shallots
While you can purchase onions by the pound with a little loose change, shallots are sold by the ounce for big bucks. The curious thing is that shallots are much easier to grow, and even more productive than the common cooking onion. When growing shallots you can also replant part of your harvest and avoid buying new seed for future crops.
Shallots are preferred by gourmet chefs for the subtle and delicious flavors that they impart to even the most basic recipe. In the garden shallots require very little in the way of effort and don’t require much garden space. So if you love shallots but hate paying exorbitant amounts to enjoy them, the perfect solution is to grow your own.
French Shallots, also know as grey shallots are recognized as the ultimate “true” shallot by gourmet chefs, but there are many other great varieties including: Dutch yellow shallots, red shallots, and the larger frog leg and banana (echalion) shallots.
Planting Shallots in the Home Garden
Cultivation is simple, shallots are grown in much the same fashion as garlic. Plant them six to eight inches apart with the root scar facing downward and the pointed end facing up. They should be placed at a depth so that the tops are just barely below the soil. Fall is the best time for planting in most areas and shallots have no trouble surviving winter conditions.
Shallots will grow well in average garden soil, there’s no need for heavy applications of fertilizer. Just keep the bed weeded and watered, and you’ll discover how easily they produce, with none of the day length issues that you encounter when growing onions.
Fall planted shallots will be ready for harvesting early the following summer. Save some of the best bulbs to replant in the fall and you’ll never need to repurchase seed stock.
If you’re interested in more information on growing shallots and raising a beautiful garden that’s loaded with delicious gourmet produce check out my new ebook: “Amazing Secrets to Growing Luscious Fruits and Vegetables at Home.”
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