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Growing Shallots, also Eschalots

Jan F M A M J J A S O N Dec
    P P P P P          

(Best months for growing Shallots in Australia - tropical regions)

P = Sow seed

  • Easy to grow. Plant small bulblets, with stem just showing above ground. Best planted at soil temperatures between 8°C and 30°C. (Show °F/in)
  • Space plants: 15 - 20 cm apart
  • Harvest in 12-15 weeks. Keep a few for your next planting.
  • Compatible with (can grow beside): Lemon Balm, Borage, Carrots, Beets, Silverbeet, Lettuce, Amaranth
  • Avoid growing close to: Peas, Beans

Shallots are grown from small bulbs kept from the main plant. Once they are established, you can keep your supply going indefinitely by saving a few bulblets each year.

A type of small mild multiplying onion, popular in French cooking.

Tree onions or 'walking onions' produce bulbs at the top of the stem.

Shallots are not spring onions and are quite different to the green bunching "Eschallots" (Allium fistulosum) which, just to confuse us, are also called shallots in Eastern Australia.

They are more like garlic in their growth as they form a clump of bulbs at the base of the stem.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Shallots

Use in any recipe instead of onions
Can be cooked whole, braised gently with other vegetables.
Sometimes pickled.

Your comments and tips

08 Aug 17, Peter (Australia - temperate climate)
Hi thank you for you advice very informative for us beginners . My wife and I are now retirees and are getting into the veggies and live it we are growing onions of all types for the first time shallots with no bulb having great results so we have planted bought from retailer golden shallots it has 3 thick stems coming from base massive leaves do they fall over like normal onions when they are due to be harvested ? as we don't know when they are ready thank you again peter Oran Park nsw
10 Aug 17, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
I don't grow onions because they take so long to grow. We can buy onion in the shops for $1-1.50 a kg. The reason I grow shallots (a lot of people mix up shallots with spring onions and even eshallots) is because they are so easy and quick to grow and you keep bulbs from one year for the next year to plant. I planted some on Monday and they are shooting out of the ground today - Thursday - will be eating them in about 5 weeks time. Happy gardening - great rewards from eating what you grow.
31 Jul 17, Michelle (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
I planted a number of shooting French Shallot bulbs earlier this year. I now have rows of beautiful plants. Today after checking if any bulbs were below the soil I have discovered that there are no bulbs only lots of plants that look like shallots or green onions. Could you please give me some advice on what may have happened. Also are the stems of the planrs able to be eaten like green onions? Thank you so much.
01 Aug 17, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
I have looked up French shallots and they look a bit different to mine. My shallots are a cluster (when mature) of 6-12 segments, lightly attached together. As I pointed out below, if I grow them into the winter (planted Feb March April) they take a bit longer to form bulbs - they stay like a spring onion for longer - straight with no bulb. Left long enough they will bulb up. If I plant say now (August), when they mature in the hotter weather in Oct/Nov they go to bulb very quickly. I don't eat much of the green top but some do eat it. My suggestion is give them time to bulb. I eat them before they really bulb up - we eat them in salads, sandwiches or straight as they are raw.
11 Jul 17, King J (Australia - cool/mountain climate)
"Peter Cundall's year-round planting and sowing guide for vegetables" ("suitable for Tasmanian and cool-climate conditions") on the ABC radio website says to sow shallots in May and plant them during June to August. I'm not sure what the distinction is supposed to be between sowing and planting shallots.
14 Jul 17, John (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
'Sowing' refers to seeds and 'planting' refers to bulbs or sets
22 Mar 17, Tery (Australia - temperate climate)
I think at times definitely garlic and therefore possibly therefore shallot it takes a couple of seasons to get results
23 Jan 17, Lindsay (Australia - temperate climate)
I grew shallots in pots for the first time this year and am puzzled since in some pots they produced bulbs and yet in other pots none of the plants produced a bulb by the time they had died off. Any ideas please? Annoying because the few that I got were fabulous. Nothing like bought ones. Thanks.
04 Apr 17, Mike (Australia - temperate climate)
If putting in pots make sure to have good rich loose soil. The only time I have poor shallots is when they grow in the shade (winter sun comes across the end of the row). The best shallots I grow, are from now into the winter. I read below how people leave the plant to nearly die before picking. I pick mine before the plant goes to seed. I eat shallots nearly every day when I have them producing in the garden. In scrabble eggs, in tossed salads, in soups, on a sandwich with tomato meat cheese, or even just whole on the plate with other salads.
03 Apr 17, Mike (Australia - temperate climate)
I grow shallots every year from Feb/March until Oct - Bundaberg. I keep some of the bulbs for the following year. This has gone on for 35 years. In the winter they take a long time to bulb, Where as in the hotter months the run to bulb very quickly. Shallots like sun all day. If grown in the shade they grow very weak and may not bulb up. Plenty of sun water and fert. The bought ones are generally spring onions.
Showing 1 - 10 of 94 comments

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