Papa’s Onion Drying Rack

While we have found a couple of wonderful onion varieties to grow, we were not happy with the over-wintering we got from them last year.  We tied them up in panty hose and used them from the bottom up.  They did ok, but by January, we had a few that had gone bad and by late February we had to throw out any that were left, since they were all rotting.  After a bit of research, we found a few suggestions to prepare the onions for winter storage.  We found some who tied them in bunches, hanging them to dry. Some braided the tops together like garlic and hung them to dry.  Since we have tried both of these techniques, with limited success, we decided to try an onion drying rack.  Papa decided to make that one of his projects on a rainy July day.  Yes, we were very grateful to be able to say we had a rainy day in July!

We never have a shortage of “helpers” on our projects.  Rastus, Sally and Jimbo oversee everything we do.

By placing the screw through the side of the 48″ piece into the end of the the 27″ piece, and repeating for all four corners, the frame is created.

After ripping the lumber to 2″, a piece is attached at each top edge.

Papa prefers to use the screws with the “star” heads.  They are easier to snug down tight without stripping them out.




A 1″ block is used as a spacer between strips.


When each strip is screwed down, the top is complete.  The spaces between the strips will be perfect for dropping the onion tops through to allow the bulb to sit on the top and dry before storing them for the winter.

After ripping a 2 x 6 to 1 1/2″ x 1 1/2″ stock. Papa cut 2 pieces 27″ and 2 pieces 48″ to put together to make a 30″ x 48″ frame.

A 1 x 12 is ripped cut to 48″ to make the slats for the top of the rack.


Strips are added the full width of the top.

After assembling the rack, we added rope from the corners.  Ropes were put through pulleys that were placed on hooks in the rafters at the top of the lean-to room behind the canning kitchen.  The ropes and pulleys are used to pull the rack above your head out of the way, yet it can be lowered to easily fill it with onions.

Click on the video below to see Papa in action!

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