Mainly used as an ingredient in Chinese recipes and an important part of the spices produced for the seasoning industry, green onion is packed with many health benefits.
Otherwise called escallion or spring onion, this vegetable is a grass-like plant with long leaves that is grown for food and medicinal purposes.
Health Benefits of Green Onions
Green onions are good for you because they are rich in vitamins and minerals and are excellent for use as an antibacterial and antifungal agent.
The mostly white stem also contains a wide array of useful compounds like essential minerals and vitamins.
1. Fights Candida
Because of its potent antifungal and antibacterial properties, it can help those suffering from Candida which often results in water retention, to flush unnecessary fluid from their bodies.
2. Helps Prevent Colon Cancer
Onion with its many phytochemicals including allicin, helps with inflammation and eliminate cancer-causing toxins that are found in the colon.
3. Relieves Mosquito Bites
An excellent remedy for mosquito bites because of their ability to pull fluids from the skin.
Simply crush a whole stalk and apply the juice or press an onion slice onto the affected area and hold for a few minutes.
If the symptoms persist, affix a slice to the area with a piece of medical tape for a longer period until the irritation stops.
4. Promotes a Healthy Heart
Green onion, which is an excellent source of sulfur, has strong heart-health benefits.
Sulfur is known to reduce the unwanted clotting of blood platelets, so by reducing clumping or clotting, sulfur may well lessen the risk of a heart attack.
This sulfur also possesses the ability to lower cholesterol and triglycerides. These are recognized as risk factors that might increase the chance of someone developing heart disease.
5. Prevents Cold and Flu
The active ingredient — allicin — that is found within contains antiviral qualities that fight off colds and other flu-causing viruses.
Other Medicinal Uses
- Traditional medicine for the common cold.
- Used as a stimulant for the respiratory tract that helps with the expelling of sputum (phlegm).
- Stabilizes blood pressure.
- It is good for the skin. Onions contain antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, and anti-bacterial properties, as well as vitamin C — all of which promote healthy glowing skin.
- Prevents diarrhea.
- While speeding up blood circulation, it absorbs vitamin B1 which decreases stress levels and reduces tiredness.
- It contains sulfur which kills or prevents fungus infection.
- The benefits of scallion leaves include them being an excellent source of folate, vitamins, and minerals.
Green Onion Nutrition
- Vitamin B2 – 0.04mg
- Calcium -31 mg
- Iron – 1.2mg
- Potassium – 180mg
- Vitamin A1 – 0.04mg
- Vitamin C – 11mg
Scallions vs Green Onions
There are no significant differences between the two.
They both have white stems and green stalks and harvested alike. They also display the same properties and nutritional values.
Scallion stems are thin while green onions resemble their namesake – they have bulb-like stems.
The terms are used interchangeably to represent the same thing in different regions.
Chives vs Green Onion
Chive is considered an herb while the green onion is a vegetable.
Moreover, the green onion plant has a slender long green stalk with a white bulb at the end, while chives are wholly green with no visible bulbs.
Growing Green Onions
They are a fun, great, and versatile vegetable because they are actually scallions.
They’re extremely easy to grow and are perfect for a wide variety of different dishes. Below is a basic growing guide.
They grow year-round. Growing them from store-bought seeds is your best bet if just starting out.
For those wondering how to grow onions from scraps, they are grown by splitting and planting single stalks that still have roots attached, much like bamboo.
In order to grow most efficiently, they require rich soil that drains well, since their roots grow shallow and need moisture all the time.
It’s best to plant them tightly together to retain this moisture and also repel weeds that might seek a foothold.
When planting onions overall, you can either bury them straight away or else transplant them outdoors after germinating indoors for four to eight weeks.
You’ll want to dig down about ¼ inch into the ground following the final frost. Keep them about ½ inch apart from one another for optimal spacing.
If you’re up for the farming challenge, you can even buy scallions from the grocery store and plant those if they still have roots attached.
Done properly, they’ll even grow in a glass of water indoors. This method works well if you live in an apartment and don’t have easy access to soil.
2. Partial Shade or Full Sun?
Scallions is among the vegetables that can survive in partial shade, but your best recommendation is full sun when at all possible. However, if you do plant them outdoors in full sun, be sure to give them plenty of water.
3. Fertilizer and Weed Control
They’d be happy with a little natural fertilizer every month to supplement their nutrition. High nitrogen fertilizer is best.
We recommend fish emulsion fertilizer.
Aside from that, regular manual weeding is highly advised, since the scallions are already tightly packed and weeds would just choke them.
4. Dealing With Pests
When it comes to dealing with pests, you won’t have a ton to worry about with scallions.
They don’t generally have a lot of buggy predators. You can always rotate the next crop to another patch of land if you do start to notice anything.
A few new threats have appeared, however; the allium leaf miner, which lays eggs in big leaved plants. The larvae eat their way around the plant, including the bulb.
Other threats include the beet armyworm and other leaf eating worms, thrips, and nematodes. The beet armyworm is known as one of the most damaging pests affecting green onion farmers.
Harvesting is best when the plants are about 5-6 inches tall, about the width of a pencil. Like an onion, you pull the entire plant out of the ground, bulb and all.
However, if you planted a perennial version of the scallion, it’s best to not harvest it the first year, save for thinning the crops.
At the end of the season (6-8 weeks), you can lift the whole clump out of the ground and replant one or two stalks so you have more the following season.
Or, you can pull it; leaving one or two stalks of each clump in the ground to create new babies. It depends on your tolerance for replanting green onions.
Cultivation is super easy and great for beginners. Just be sure to pay attention to the steps and to the plant itself and you can’t go wrong.
It’s a great confidence booster for next year’s planting for young farmers.
How Do You Use It?
Most recipes use just the white root and the pale green portion of the onion. However, the green leaves are just as important.
When finely chopped, they can be used as a delicious garnish for any dish.
They can be eaten either as a side dish with seasonings or used as flexible seasoning themselves. They can even replace fresh chives in any recipe.
- In Soups. Add 2-3 stalks of scallion to a boiling pot of soup or sprinkle it finely chopped over a bowl of soup for a fantastic garnish.
- Seasoned Fried Rice: Gather up some leftover rice, veggies, eggs, and green onions in a hot pot and cook until crispy.
- In Salads: Add scallions to your salads for a bit of crunch, flavor, and color.
- In Sandwiches: Perk up your sandwich with some scallions for a mouth-watering meal.
How to Store
To keep them fresh, pour some water into a glass jar and place the root section in it. The jar can then be covered with a plastic bag and placed in the refrigerator. Be sure to replace the water every 3-4 days.
You can also wrap the end (root section) in a damp paper towel and place the entire plant in a storage container or plastic bag.
Green onions are not miracle-working plants, but they can help to improve your health significantly. As you can see from the list above, spring onion benefits are plenty.
The best thing about it is that there are no known side-effects of consuming organically grown vegetables.