I let some of my onions go to seed two years ago, and last year planted those seeds. I don’t know what type of onions the seeds grew from. Some, not all, of those seeds produced onions with multiple little bulbs (sort of like garlic) instead of a single large bulb. What would cause that? The multiple small bulbs were pretty useless, actually, and seemed a waste of effort. How can I prevent this in the future?
North Highlands, California
Do you or your neighbors have “walking” or “top-set” onions? It’s quite possible that your onions crossed with these. Or if your onions were a hybrid, perhaps they had top-set parentage somewhere in their background. If you raise your own open-pollinated onions from seed, then save seed from these onions, making sure they don’t cross with neighbors’ onions. You should have no problem saving seed in the future. — Jackie
How much room do seven chickens need? I am looking to buy a chicken tractor with a run but don’t know what size. HELP!
New Freedom, Pennsylvania
Seven regular-sized chickens (not bantams) need an indoor space of 4 square feet each, plus their outdoor run which should be at least double that. Bigger is better. So your four chickens would need an indoor coop of 28 sq feet or a rectangle about 7×4 feet. Chicken tractors are very easy to build yourself. All they are is a basic bottomless plywood box with a flip up hinged lid for access and a small door to access the wire pen. I used to raise purebred chickens and had chicken tractors all over my yard with trios of chickens in them to keep them purebred. And I made them myself from scrap plywood, lumber, 1x4s (for the frame of the outdoor coop), and chicken wire. They were so light I didn’t even need wheels but your larger one would and wheels are easy to lag bolt onto the wooden coop. Just a thought to save you some cash. — Jackie