Onion 'Globo' has the classic ‘flask’ shape with pale straw skin colour and dark veining, this is an early onion and perfect for the August September shows.
The bulbs typically weigh 250 to 350 grams from a spring sowing, but weights can reach up to 1kg if sown in early December, making it ideal for competition and show bench work.
'Globo' is already beginning to win prizes at shows, while its mild flavour and tender texture can be put to good use in the kitchen. Sow maincrop onions March to April outdoors, and thin early. For very large onions sow December to early January and transplant seedlings in spring. Recommended spacing for large, transplanted bulbs is 40 x 30cm.
'Globo' is an onion with great potential having won the Best in Show at the Haverford West County Show in 2010. The following year, the weigh-in at the onion trials conducted in autumn 2011 produced a surprising result when newcomer 'Globo' beat heavyweight veteran 'The Kelsae'.
Choose an open, sunny site with good drainage which has preferably been dug and manured in the previous autumn. Do not plant or sow on freshly manured bed. Lime if the soil is acid. Avoid planting in an area where the previous crop was of the onion family. Many exhibitors grow their show onions in a permanent bed in order to build up fertility, but in the kitchen plot it is a much better idea to change the site annually.
Apply a general fertiliser if needed and rake the surface when the soil is reasonably dry. Tread over the area and then rake again to produce a fine, even tilth.
Timing: Sow in Autumn or Late Winter to Spring
Seeds can be sown direct in autumn to be harvested in 46 weeks to produce large bulbs (not advisable in very cold areas) Otherwise sow in February under cloches or direct March to April and harvest in 22 weeks. In cold areas and for exhibition bulbs sow under glass in December to January, harden off in March and transplant outdoors in April.
Sow very thinly in 12mm (½in) deep drills, leaving about 25 to 30 cm (10 to 12in) between rows. Water very gently if the soil is dry, and cover with soil.
When large enough to handle, thin the crop in two stages. Close spacing will give smaller onions than wider spacings. Lift the seedlings carefully – the soil should be moist and all thinnings removed to deter onion fly. (They may be used as spring onions)
Thin spring-sown seedlings first to 25mm (1in) then when the seedlings have straightened up to 5 to 10 cm (2 to 4in) apart. Thin autumn sown onion seedlings to about 25mm (1in) in the autumn. Further thin to about 5 to 10 cm (2 to 4in) between plants in the Spring.
Seedlings raised under glass should be transplanted 4in (10cm) apart, leaving 9in (23cm) between the rows. The roots must fall vertically in the planting hole and the bulb base should be about 12mm (½in) below the surface. Plant firmly.
Hoe carefully or weed by hand – dense weed growth will seriously affect yield. Water if the weather is dry (not otherwise) and feed occasionally. Feed an autumn-sown crop in March. Mulching is useful for cutting down the need for water and for suppressing weeds. Break off any flower stems which appear. Stop watering once the onions have swollen and pull back the covering earth or mulch to expose the bulb surface to the sun.
Harvesting: 24 weeks from sowing to maturity.
When the bulb is mature the foliage turns yellow and topples over. (Some gardeners bend over the tops as the leaves start to yellow). Leave them for about 2 weeks and then carefully lift with a fork on a dry day.
Inspect the bulbs carefully – all damaged, soft, spotted and thick-necked onions should be set aside for kitchen use or freezing. The rest can be stored.
The onions which are not for immediate use must be thoroughly dried. Spread out the bulbs on sacking or in trays – outdoors if the weather is warm and sunny.
Drying will take 7 to 21 days, depending on the size of the bulbs and the air temperature..
Store in trays, net bags, tights or tie to a length of cord as onion ropes.
Choose a cool and well-lit place; they will keep until late spring
Lifting Onions for Exhibition:
The onions should be lifted about five to six weeks prior to the show in order to ensure they have reached optimum size. Before you lift them peel back any broken skins as best you can and then leave in the ground for a few more days before lifting so that the bulbs can fill out again. Once harvested place on wire racks in the garden to dry, (in the event of rain cover with polythene and then remove once the rain stops).
Once the roots and tops have withered you can select your chosen sets and trim away the dead roots, cut back the tops to three or four inches and then wash carefully with a cloth using warm water and a dash of washing up liquid.
Once clean, dry the onion bulbs carefully and cover with a liberal helping of talcum powder to facilitate even colour once the drying process finishes. Wrap these bulbs in newspaper or tissue and again store in a safe place until a few days prior to the show.
Before the show simply wipe the talcum powder away carefully and tie the tops with raffia close to the bulb before trimming away the surplus. If you are concerned the skin around the base of the neck will crack when tied, a little water rubbed around this skin will soften it whilst you tie it and prevent cracking. Stand your prepared sets in trays of sawdust until the show day when you can display them according to the show schedule.
Exhibiting Globo Onions:
The weigh-in at the onion trials conducted in autumn 2011 produced a surprising result when newcomer 'Globo' beat heavyweight veteran 'The Kelsae'.
In the 20-row trial of different varieties the three heaviest onions were taken from each.
The 'Globo' bulbs weighed an average of 528g whereas 'The Kelsae', from which many exhibition strains were developed, managed just 410gm. A strain of 'Ailsa Craig', which was also in the trial, produced an average bulb weight of 513g.
All onions in the trial were cell-grown from seed before being planted out in spring 2011. The plants received no special treatment or feeding and were grown in conditions almost identical to those in a home garden.
Granted it is all very unscientific and no doubt statistically inaccurate, but it certainly does give an idea of 'Globo’s' potential.
- Additional Information
Average Seed Count 200 Seeds Common Name Early, White Bulbing, Exhibition Onion. Family Alliaceae Genus Allium Species cepa Cultivar Globo Hardiness Hardy Biennial Spacing Thin to about 5 to 10 cm (2 to 4 inches) Position Choose an open, sunny site with good drainage Time to Sow Sow in Autumn or Late Winter to Spring Germination 21 days Time to Harvest 24 weeks from sowing to maturity. Notes Stored seed viability: 1-2 years. Yield from a 10 ft row: 4kg (8lb).
Stored seed viability: 1-2 years.