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ISHS Acta Horticulturae 555: II International Symposium on Edible Alliaceae

ONION GROWING IN THE NEXT MILLENIUM

Author:   E. Steenge
DOI:   10.17660/ActaHortic.2001.555.1
Abstract:
Onions can be grown under a range of day lengths short, medium and long, and in any country with a day length greater than 12 hours. Restrictions other than day length may apply to various countries these include climate, labor (skill and cost), quality, know how, logistics and transport. In some countries the costs involved in compensating for these limitations makes onion production unprofitable. Countries like the USA can grow onions under the full range of day lengths, resulting in the ability to offer a diverse range of onion types. The huge climatic variations imply that a co-ordinate approach between states is required in the supply of onions. Other countries do not have the climatic diversity of the USA and are limited to growing only one type of onion suited to the particular climate.

Research is currently focused on developing both breeding programs and cultural practices that have potential to alter varietal day length restrictions. Breeding programs are working on improving quality characteristics, skin firmness and shape of short day onions, resulting in an onion that will meet the consumer demand for diversification in colour and taste.

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