Growing Shallots

Shallots are available in stores from May, and can be planted right through to Spring. They are a member of the onion family, similar to multiplying onions but smaller. Shallots have a mild onion flavour and can be eaten fresh or cooked and grow happily wherever onions will grow.

How to Care

  • Plant in a sunny position, with a well drained soil
  • Add compost and/or peat prior to planting
  • Apply all-purpose fertiliser at rate of 200gm/m2
  • Divide into single bulbs before planting
  • Press each bulb firmly into the soil, leave top ½ above the ground
  • Space 10cm apart, 25 cm between rows
  • Each bulb will produce 6-12 new bulbs
  • Harvest when leaves wither back to the neck of bulb, in mid-summer
  • Store in a cool airy place, tied on strings or in string bags
Where to plant 
  • Shallots can be planted in the vegetable garden provided they get a reasonable amount of sunshine each day.
  • The soil should be fertile and free draining. Improve heavy soils by the addition of compost or peat.
  • Shallots can also be grown in large troughs or containers.
  • Use a good all-purpose plant food in the garden, and a slow release general fertiliser in pots and containers.
Cooking with Shallots 
  • Roast Shallots in their skins until soft—then peel and eat with the meal.
  • Sauteed shallots need to be cooked gently, being careful not to burn as this can make them bitter.
  • Use shallots in dishes where you are using wine.
  • Three or four Shallots can be substituted for one medium sized onion.
  • Eating Shallots will not give you bad breath as Garlic does.