You’re ready to plant onion sets for the first time! The excitement is palpable. You read up on how to plant onions and now you know that your favorite onion, the one you’ve been growing forever, will turn into a crop of sweet-smelling, juicy onion sets at the end of summer. You know you’ll be able to get an unlimited supply for your future cookouts and dinnertime meals. You almost want to start planning those cookouts now.
1. Plan Your Onion Sets Layout
Onions are very hardy plants that can be grown in a variety of conditions and weather. They should, however, never be planted in windy or cloudy conditions. Onions harvest best when the days are warm and sunny and the nights cool (around 55 degrees). A good rule of thumb is dry to moist soil is ideal for growth. If you live in a cool area, remember to water in the heat of the summer. Put your pots on your patio or deck for easy access.
2. Prepare The Soil
Most plants that are grown indoors will do fine with a small amount of soil in their pots. It is important to know how much soil each plant needs, so that you aren’t overwatering or under watering them during growing season. Onions are heavy feeders, which means their roots need more nutrients than most plants do. They will need more nitrogen and potassium than most plants do. When a plant is at its most extended growth stage it needs more food than when at any other stage of growth.
3. Dig Out The Soil
It’s time to make the holes for your onion sets! Dig a hole 3 inches deep in each pot and add one-third of an inch of compost per square pot, then mix and pack in more soil around the root ball until it’s level with the top of the pot.
4. Plant The Onion Sets
Using your shovel, gently break off the crown of each onion, leaving a 2-1/2 inch ring and place the crown in your hole. Continue digging down to fill in the hole with dirt. To plant them deeper, just push them into the soil until they fall over to their recommended depth.
5. Water Your Onion Sets
Water your newly planted onion sets every day for the first two weeks after planting before you start feeding them (see below). A good rule of thumb to remember when watering is to always stop watering if the top 3-4 inches of soil is dry or has wilted. You should also make sure you have at least one inch of water in the soil before planting.
6. Feed The Onion Sets
After two weeks, start feeding your onion plants with a liquid fertilizer until harvest (see below). Feed your onion plants once a week, applying it evenly and covering the entire root ball. Onion sets prefer to be fertilized, especially when they are in their growth phase.
7. Water The Onion Sets
As your onion plants grow, all of the growth will happen at the top, leaving the roots at the bottom of the pot dry and susceptible to disease. This is why it is important that you continue to water your plants and not let them wilt during their growth phase.
8. Harvest The Onion Sets
All of this work is now paid off! It’s time to harvest your onions. Do this carefully so you don’t damage or kill any leaves. When the tops of the leaves start to turn brown, it’s time to harvest. Pull out your onion sets and allow them to dry in the shade for a day before storing them in a cool, dry place (away from the sun).
9. Store Your Onion Sets
If your onion seeds are not ready for winter, you can prop them up so they don’t touch the ground. Keep them out of the sun and stay away from cold drafts. If you have any excess onion sets left over after harvest, make sure they are covered in soil and not subject to any freezing temperatures.
Frequently Asked Questions:
What are some tips for planting onion sets?
When you are ready to plant your onion seeds in soil, use a well-draining soil and keep the temperature of the soil warm between 65 and 75 degrees at all times. This will ensure that the onion sets grow at a steady rate throughout the process.
How often should I water my onion seedlings?
Water your onion sets when the top 2-3 inches of soil is dry. If you water them too much, they may become susceptible to disease. Water them only enough so that they don’t wilt. Water them when the top soil is dry to the touch, but still crumbly.
How do I know when my onion sets are ready for harvest?
As long as your onions are not wilted and have at least one inch of soil on top, you will be able to harvest them after two weeks when their tops start to turn brown. You must wait until all of the leaves have turned brown before harvesting so that you don’t damage or kill any leaves.
How do I go about harvesting my onion sets?
If you leave the soil in your onions, you can harvest them in the same way as long as you are careful and do not damage or kill any leaves. If the leaves on your onion sets start to turn brown, it means that they are ready for harvest. Once they are all brown, cut them down with a sharp knife. You will be able to harvest them from the dirt attached to the onion.
What do I do if I don’t have a spot in my yard?
If you don’t have a place to plant your onion sets, you can always try planting them at your local farmers market. It is also possible to transplant your onion sets into pots or directly onto your veggie garden. Planting directly into the soil will help keep away disease and insects.
What can I do to prevent onion sets from being attacked by aphids?
You should try to root control hormone. You can find this in the gardening section of your local supermarket. If you don’t have access to this, you can try an “off the counter” approach using apple cider vinegar. Mix 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar with 1 liter of water and spray your plants with it about once a week.
How do I choose a good onion set variety?
Onion sets are a good way to grow onions without having to worry about transplanting them. They are usually very inexpensive, as well. The best onions sets will grow in any condition and are known for their large yields. When you go to buy the seeds, look for the longest roots and onion bulbs since they will have a higher yield. These bulbs should be no smaller than an inch in diameter.
When is the best time to start planting onion sets?
You can start planting onion sets in the spring as soon as the soil is warm enough. The best time to plant them is when there still is some frost, but not too much. If you do get a lot of frost, it will slow down the development of your plants so don’t even try this option.
How long do onion sets last?
Onion sets will last for about 10 to 12 months when they are not being root attacked. For tomato or cucumber, you can prune them after 3 months. Another way to extend the life of your onion sets is by mulching them with a straw bale, hay or wood chips.
What kind of soil do I need?
Any type of soil will work for onions but you should choose one that drains well because this will help prevent onion roots from staying wet and rotting in the ground.
How far apart should I plant my onions?
The best spacing is 18 inches. Keep in mind that the more rows you have, the less room there will be for bulbs to grow. Sets need enough space so that they have room to grow and develop. Do not compromise on this important factor when planning your garden layout.
What are my options for growing onion sets in containers?
You can grow onion sets in a container if all you have is a small area of your garden or patio. You can buy onion sets in various sizes and either plant them immediately or store them in your refrigerator for a few days. As soon as you have planted the sets, just water the soil and wait for them to sprout.
What are my options for growing onion sets on my patio?
If you have an open space in your patio, you should consider growing onion sets there. You can do this by digging holes 18 inches deep. Make sure that you keep the spacing equal from each hole. Insert the onion sets in the holes in a staggered fashion. Water them and keep them moist.
What are my options for growing onion sets in a container?
You can grow onion sets in containers if you don’t have much garden space. Preparing the soil is similar to preparing garden beds, but you should work with smaller quantities of compost and soil.
Will onion sets grow if planted in the summer?
Onion sets grow best in cool soil, but they’ll still grow through the heat of summer. Plants grown from onion sets are a little more delicate than ones grown from seed, so to avoid disappointment, plant your set onions in late summer or fall for harvest the following spring.
There are a number of facts and tips you should know before growing your own onion sets. By doing this, you will continue to have a constant supply of fresh and delicious onions for many months straight. So whether you decide to plant your seedlings in the garden or on the patio, or even in vertical gardens, make sure that you keep learning about them so that you have everything you need to keep your onions healthy and growing. We hope you enjoyed this post on how to grow onion sets.