Get growing



Just stick them in the ground. That’s it.

  • Not even slightly difficult to grow. Just plant sets (small baby onions) in the spring. Dig them up from late summer.
  • Experiment with whole range of different onions: spring, pickling, shallots
  • With a big enough plot you could easily to get a year’s supply from one crop (if stored well, they keep for months)

Complete growing directions

  1. Buy ‘sets’—tiny immature onions made for planting.
  2. Make V-shaped trenches in the soil, 10 inches apart (use the edge of a rake or hoe).
  3. Place the sets upright in the rows 4 inches apart and replace the soil right up to their necks. Water and wait!
  4. Hint: birds might tweak your bulbs out by their necks, thinking they are worms. If they do, just pop them back in.
  5. To harvest let the leaves turn brown, lift out the bulbs and put them somewhere to dry.
  1. The easiest way to tell if something needs watering is with your finger: poke it into the soil to test.
  2. If the soil is damp just under the surface, don't water. If it is dry up to the first crease of your finger then you need to water.
  3. Seeds and seedlings need care when watering – use a fine-head watering can so you don't over-water them.
  4. It is better to water well infrequently than to sprinkle a little every day.

Check out Compost Made Simple for all your composting needs and know-how.

» Download a full guide to growing salad (pdf)


All about Onions

  • Plant: Late February–April
  • Harvest: July–August
  • Container: The ground
  • Location: Garden
  • What to sow: Plant