Years ago a friend gave me some walking onion bulblets. I planted them knowing little about the plants or that goats love walking onions.
Another name for walking onions is Egyptian onions. They are expensive in the seed catalogs. I don’t know why as the plants are prolific producers of bulblets.
The plants come up in the early spring. The leaves resemble green onion leaves and can be used in the same ways. They are great in scrambled eggs or in stir fries.
When spring heats up, thick stalks with pale green tops come up. These produce the bulblets.
My first patch was a small row in an out of the way corner. My garlic patch was close by. I soon learned why these are called walking onions.
Those thick stalks grow tall, produce their bulblets and fall over. Wherever those bulblets touch the ground, new plants grow.
My row is now a patch.
The only way to control these plants and still have them to use is to remove the thick stalks. They could go out to the compost heap.
As I walked past the goat yard, the goats came over to find out what I had. I offered one stalk to them.
Surprise. Goats love walking onions.
Now I go out and gather enough stalks for each goat each evening. First I milk. Then I give them the onions.
Some of these stalks are over two feet long. At first I thought I would break these up as the goats couldn’t possibly eat them.
Not true. This is an opportunity to see those facile goat lips in action.
The goat grabs the end of the onion stalk and starts chewing. Those lips keep pulling the stalk in.
It reminds me of eating spaghetti noodles when I was young. Put one end in and suck. My mother was not impressed when the end flicked sauce off to wherever.
Feeding a few walking onions a night makes them last longer. Once the stalks are gone, the goats will eat the regular leaves too. After all, goats love walking onions.
Enjoy more goat antics in “For Love of Goats.”