Are you a gardener who wants to add more variety to your vegetable garden? If so, you might want to consider growing onion sets. Onion sets are small onions that are grown from seeds and then transplanted into your garden. They’re a great option for gardeners who want to get a head start on their onion crop without waiting for a full year. In this guide, we’ll talk about the benefits of planting onion sets and how to grow them successfully.
Let’s go over some of the benefits of using onion sets. One of the biggest advantages is time. By planting onion sets in the fall, you’ll be able to harvest your crop in the spring or early summer, rather than waiting an entire year for onions to mature. Onion sets are also easier to plant than onion seeds, as they don’t require a lot of time or effort to get started. Additionally, onion sets are less prone to disease and pests.
So how do you grow onion sets? The first step is to choose a location that gets plenty of sunlight and has well-draining soil. Onions prefer slightly acidic soil with a pH of around 6.0 to 6.8. You can test your soil’s pH using a kit from your local garden center. We have pH kits to choose from in the garden department of our store that are perfect for the job. Once you’ve found the perfect spot, prepare the soil by tilling it and adding compost or other organic matter.
When planting your onion sets, make sure to space them about 4-6 inches apart and plant them at a depth of about 1 inch. Push each set into the soil until the tip is barely visible. Onions don’t need a lot of water, but make sure to keep them well-watered during dry spells. You can also mulch around your onions to help retain moisture and suppress weeds.
As your onions grow, be sure to keep an eye out for pests and diseases. Common onion pests include onion maggots, thrips, and onion flies, while common onion diseases include downy mildew, onion smut, and white rot. If you notice any issues, remove affected plants and treat the surrounding soil with an organic fungicide or insecticide.
Finally, you can harvest your onion sets. Onions are ready to harvest when the tops dry out and start to fall over. At this point, stop watering your onions and let them cure in the garden for a week or two. Once the outer skin is papery and the tops are dry and brittle, you can harvest your onions. Hang them in a cool, dry place for a few weeks to allow them to fully cure before storing them in a cool, dry spot.
Growing onion sets is a great way to add a quick and easy crop to your vegetable garden. With the right growing conditions and care, you can enjoy fresh, homegrown onions in just a few months. By following these tips, you’ll be on your way to a bumper onion crop in no time!