Category Archives: Shallots

Growing Onions from Sets

The easiest way to grow Onions is to start with “Sets” these are simply small immature onions.

Sets are produced  by sowing onion seed thickly normally in the Summer the plants are allowed to grow just until they start forming bulbs, these immature bulbs lifted and cured like regular onions.

A lot of onion sets are “heat treated ” this means they are subjected to higher temperatures which kills the flower embryo and so prevents the onions “bolting” or running to seed before forming the onion bulb.

Heat Preparation also extends the growth period which means that greater yields can be achieved.


This film shows how to plant sets into a growing bed

You can also plant Shallots and onions in the Autumn

using these varieties


Autumn Sown Onions Sets

Spring isnt the only time for planting onions ,you can plant Japanese overwintering Onions and the best tasting Shallots in the Autumn.

“It’s hard to imagine civilization without onions.”
-Julia Child

The varieties I would recommend for taste and yield                                                             Onions                                                                                                                                            Silver Moon  Senshyu   Red Barron

Shallots                                                                                                                                           Jermor     Brittany long   Eschalot Grise

A dressing of calcified seaweed at planting helps with PH as onions prefer a PH around 6.5 Autumn planting is not suitable for heavy soils prone to waterlogging as the crop is more likely to succumb to disease

Over-wintered onions and shallots greatly benefit from an application of 35g per sq m (1oz per sq yd) of nitrogen-rich fertiliser such as sulphate of ammonia in late Febuary/March. This not only enhances growth but can also help suppress premature flowering. Alternatively, use dry poultry manure pellets