How to sort + store onions

Sorting your crops into good keepers and bad keepers is key to long storage. Old fashioned smarts! Separating the ones that don’t keep from the ones that do, stops rot spreading cause one bad apple really does spoil the bunch.

Find out which onion is a keeper (or not) with this simple test.

Hold the onion by the leaves, and if it bends at the neck it’s a keeper.

onion keeper

A nicely sealed neck – she’s a keeper!

If it doesn’t bend, it wont store.

not a keeper

Stiff, thick necks don’t store

I trim the tops off my onions and hang them up in onion sacks under the deck in the cool, shade + breeze. Some years when I feel like it I string them – looks pretty, but takes more time than bagging them.

onion strings

Trim the tops off the ones that wont store and pile them into a basket. Use them first. Perfect timing considering all the preserving that’s going on at the mo.  If you’ve got a heap of these maybe a batch of caramelised onions is on the cards.



  1. Jen Cashmore says

    How exactly do you tie your onions as per your pic , first q. Secondly, does one pick the onions when they go to seed , if so, does one wait for seed to ripen , a bit and then lift, I live in Waikenae
    Great job in the garden, keep hoing, I so want to visit you , thanks, Jen

    • Hi Jen
      Stringing onions is simple as and probably best to see done rather than describe – jump onto youtube and watch a video. To dfifierent harvest here – if you are wanting seed then leave them in ground until seedheads form. If you want onions you dont want seed! Seedheads create a hard stalk through the centre of your onion rendering the onion inedible. Harvest them when the tops start falling over.
      happy harvest