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Planting Onion Sets

Mar 13, 2018

Planting Onion Sets


Onions are a cold season crop, easy to grow because of their hardiness. We recommend using onion sets, which can be planted without any worry of frost damage and have a higher success rate than direct seed or transplants.


  • Till in aged manure of fertilizer the fall before planting.
  • Think of onions as a leaf crop, not a root crop. When planting onion sets, don’t bury them completely under the soil; if more than the bottom third of the bulb is underground, growth can be restricted. Set 2-4 inches apart.
  • Practice crop rotation.


  • Fertilize with an all purpose fertilizer when bulbs begin to swell, and again when plants are one foot tall.
  • Generally onions do not need consistent watering if mulch is used. If you want sweeter onions, water more.
  • Onions will look healthy even if they are bone dry, be sure to water during drought conditions.
  • Make sure soil is well-drained. Mulch will help retain moisture and stifle weeds.
  • Cut or pull any onions that send up flower stalks.


  • When onions start to mature, the tops become yellow or brown and they will be ready to harvest.
  • Generally, onions are ready to harvest in about 110 days.