Onion Sets (Allium)
How to plant, care for and grow an onion set
|Name derived from||Allium is Latin for garlic|
|Common name||Onion, garlic, shallot, florist allium, leeks and chives.|
|Sun Exposure||Full sun and semi-shade.|
|Predators||Whitefly and aphids|
The onion is a true bulb and its first recorded use was in 3200 BC by Egyptians. They then spread to India in 600 BC and followed to Europe in 400 BC. They eventually found their way to northern Europe in the middle ages and since then it has been an important economic crop that can be grown in many tropical regions in the world.
Onions scientific name is Allium cepa. This genus is home to garlic, shallots, leeks and chives as well as onion. At maturity, the bulbs will grow to a height of 80cm.
Seasons and planting
Onions prefer a fertile, well-draining soil and compost should be included in soil to act as a mulch. It should be planted when the soil has cooled at the beginning of winter. Onions can be planted from seeds, bulblets (sets) or cuttings. We recommend that you use bulblets as it is the fastest and most reliable method. The bulblets should be planted 5 – 10cm apart and the spaces between the rows of 25cm. The more spacing, the bigger the bulb will become. The lowest temperature it can tolerate is -5°C.
Onions are fairly easy to care for and require watering once every 3 to 4 days. If the soil is kept wet, the bulb could rot.
Red Creole is an open pollinated, red, short day onion. The variety is mainly used for dehydrating, but can also be used fresh.
Images for illustrative purposes only. Some varieties may differ in colour and shape.