Author(s): Marian Coonse
As familiar a kitchen staple as onions, leeks, and garlic are, many gardeners have scores of questions about growing them. How do the species differ? How and when should you plant and harvest them? How hardy are different varieties and how do they adapt to different climates? What insects and diseases attack them, and how can you combat them?
Until now, answers to such questions had to be gleaned through trial and error, or in bits and pieces from numerous (sometimes unreliable) sources. Onions, Leeks, and Garlic: A Handbook for Gardeners offers the first comprehensive, carefully researched source of scientific and practical information for the gardener, professional market grower, supplier, or nursery. It provides a unique guide to members of the Allium family, including complete information on their history and development, families and species, planting, harvesting, disease, and drying and storing. The book describes the many species, subspecies, varieties, forms, and cultivars of onions commonly grown for food, along with their botanical names. Wild onions regarded as common fare on many tables are also discussed.
For years Marian Coonse answered these questions one at a time as they came from the customers of the herb farm she and her husband owned. From this experience came both her recognition of the need for a complete reference book and her knowledge of the bulbs she writes about. As a result, this attractive handbook is comprehensive enough to serve as a reference work for professional market gardeners, yet written in a style simple and clear enough for amateur gardeners as well. Gardeners will want to stow it in their baskets before they head for the garden or the seed store.