YOU ARE HERE > > Publications
Bulb Onion Production
onion (allium cepa L.), locally known as sibuyas, is probably
the most indispensable culinary ingredient in the world. It is
a favorite seasoning, and its pungent aroma and sharp taste makes
it ideal for spicing up meat, salads and vegetable dishes. It
is also used to cure a wide array of physiological disorders
such as cough, obesity, insomnia, hemorrhoid and constipation.
are two types of bulb onion grown in the Philippines; the yellow
and the red onion. The yellow varieties grown for the traditional
market are either the granex (flat) or the grano (round) type,
short day onions.
red varieties, on the other hand, are produced because of their
long storage life. Strains of Red Creole and Red Pinoy are among
the popular varieties being grown.
onions are grown in about 11,998 ha (1997) mainly in Central
Luzon and the Ilocos Region. They are grown both for the local
and export markets.
1997, 7,296 t of fresh onions valued at P109 million were exported
to Japan, Hongkong, Singapore, and Thailand.
Yellow Granex Hybrids
Cal 120 Red
BGS 95 (F1 hybrid)
and Soil Requirements
Onions grow well in friable and well-drained loam soil with good
water holding capacity and pH between 6 & 7.
For best growth and
bulb quality, onion requires cooler weather during the early
stages of growth and a dry atmosphere with moderately high temperature
for bulb development & maturation. Planting can be done as
early as October (yellow onions) to as late as January (red onions).
1-ha production area requires 5 kg seeds. A 300-500 m2 seedbed
produces enough transplants for one ha/ Prepare beds 1 m wide
& incorporate animal manure and rice hull.. Line sows 3-5
kg. seeds in rows set across the bed 7-10 cm apart. Distribute
seeds thinly and evenly to control damping off. Cover the seeds
lightly with compost and mulch with rice straw or grass clippings.
Maintain adequate soil moisture. Protect the seedbed against
direct sunlight and rain with nylon net or removable plastic
tunnels. Reduce watering and expose seedlings to full sunlight
one week before transplanting.
month prior to land preparation, apply about 30 cm layer of rice
hull over the entire field & burn for about two weeks. Incorporate
burnt rice hull during land preparation. Burnt rice hull reduces
occurrence of weeds & diseases & improves soil texture.
is done one month prior to transplanting. The use of tractor-driven
implement requires 1-2 plowing & harrowing operations. Apply
animal manure at 10-15 t/ha prior to bed preparation. Beds 1
m wide are recommended.
seedlings 4-6 weeks after sowing. Gently uproot the seedlings
to prevent root damage. Plant at a distance of 15 cm between
rows & 3-5 cm between transplants can also be practiced.
Use markers for proper spacing & to facilitate transplanting.
After marking, use dibbles to make holes. Plant deep enough but
not too deep. Care must be taken so as not to damage the basal
portion of the plant. Place the white portion of the plant below
the soil surface. Press the soil firmly around the basal portion.
Irrigate the field before and after transplanting.
|In the absence
of soil analysis, a 1-ha production area requires 8.5-11.4 bags
of ammonium sulfate (21-0-0), 6.6-26.7 bags super phosphate (0-18-0)
and 2-4 bags muriate of potash (0-0-60).
all of 0-18-0 & half of 21-0-0 & 0-0-60 as basal fertilizer.
Side-dress remaining 21-0-0 & 0-0-60 at 30, 45 & 60 days
after transplanting. High nitrogen rates tend to shorten storage
life of onions. Combine herbicide application with hand weeding
to produce a good quality crop.
onions require adequate moisture for steady, continuous &
desirable growth. Depending on soil types, irrigation varies
between 4 & 7 days. Stop irrigation 2-3 weeks before harvest,
or when 20-30% of the tops fold over. The last irrigation should
be a light one.
& Disease Management
blotch (Alternaria porri), leaf blight (Botrytis spp.), white-tip
disease (Phytophthora porri), and downy mildew (Peronospora destructor).
Regulate humidity within the field through proper irrigation.
Eliminate debris from previous crop. Spray compost tea (compost
tea is prepared by fermenting rice compost for 10-14 days. The
effluent is sprayed to control foliar diseases). Remove infected
leaves. Practice crop rotation.Pink root (Pyrenochaeta terrestris).
Practice soil solarization. Use resistant varieties.
Bacterial soft rot
(Erwinia carotovora), neck rot (botrytis allii), & onion
smut (Uroccystis cepulae). Harvests only mature bulbs. Maintain
good air circulation during curing, packing & storage. Practice
Sour skin (Pseudomonas
cepacia) & slippery skin (P. alliicola). Use furrow irrigation.
Incorporate copper sulfate at the last fertilization & fungicide
Thrips (Thrips tabaci),
army worm (Spodoptera exigua), cutworm (Argotis spp.), &
leafminer (Liriomyza spp.) Use overhead irrigation & high
pressure spray of water & insecticidal soap solution. Remove
badly infested leaves. Spray hot pepper extract, or spread wood
ash to control army worm & cutworm. To control leafminer,
spray chlorox solution (1:10 commercial chlorox & water)
& rinse one hour later with water. Manage weeds properly
to maintain sufficient population of natural enemies.
when the tops begin to fold over. Pull mature plants/bulbs manually
from the soil.
harvested bulb for 10-14 days in a sunny, well-ventilated area.
Align onions so that the leaves of one onion cover the bulb of
another. Clip dried leaves 1.5 inches from the stem and remove
all roots. Grade bulbs according to size & quality. Pack
in jute or net sacks for storage and/or immediate disposal.
and Return Analysis Per Hectare
I. VARIABLE COSTS P
A. Labor (P150/MD)
Harrowing (2x) 1,000
Manure application 1,500
Seedling production (15 MD) 2,250
Transplanting (25 MD) 3,750
Fertilization (3x) (12MD 1,800
Mulching (5 MD) 750
Irrigation (20 MD)
Spraying ( 20 MD) 3,000
Weeding (3x) (30MD) 4,500
Harvesting (20 MD)
Post harvest operations (35 MD) 5,250
Seeds (5 kg//ha) 4,250
Animal manure (10 t) 10,000
14-14-14 (7 bags)
46-0-0 ( 2 bags)
0-0-60 (0.5 bag)
0-18-0 (2 bags)
Fuel & Oil 5,000
II. FIXED COSTS
Land rental 5,000
5 pcs. Scythe (2 yrs)
5 pcs. Hoe ( 3 yrs)
3 pcs. Shovel (3 yrs)
2 knapsack sprayers
(5 yrs) 800
Interest on Loans at 20% int. p.a. 12,000
TOTAL COSTS 87,893
GROSS INCOME a 200,000
NET INCOME 112,107
a With marketable yield of 20 t/ha at P10/kg
Source: Bulb Onion
Information Bulletin No 197/2000 PCARRD
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE