Growing spring onions at home is great because you can grow them both indoors and outdoors. But to do so, you’ll need to know the easy 6 spring onion growing stages.
The process of growing your own spring onions at home is very simple. There are only 5 easy spring onion growing stages that you need to know about. Anything in between isn’t worth talking about as you have no control over. In this article we will highlight all the factors and stages which you’ll need to know to grow a healthy abundance of spring onions at home.
Spring onions are one of the most sustainable onions which you can grow at home, because unlike many other onion varieties, you don’t have to peel them first, you can literally eat 99% of a spring onion, with barely any waste. So let’s take a closer look at the 5 spring onion growing stages.
The 6 Spring Onion Growing Stages;
- Buy suitable pots
- Prepare the soil
- Planting spring onion seeds
- Breaching the surface
- Feeding and Watering
Buy suitable pots
The first stage for growing spring onions at home is to buy a suitable pot. You’ll be pleased to know that to grow spring onions, you don’t need a very big pot, which is great if you’re planning to grow your spring onions indoors.
You will need a pot which is a minimum of 5 x 5 inches (deep and wide), which has holes in the bottom for any excess water to drain out. This is very important as spring onions don’t like to be sat in stagnant water for long periods of time.
With a pot of this size you’ll be able to grow a handful of spring onions, roughly between 10 – 12. So it’s entirely up to you how many pots you choose to grow spring onion.
Prepare the soil
The second spring onion growing stages is to prepare the soil in which you’ll plant your seeds. Having a healthy soil to grow your spring onions is one of the most important factors throughout the entire process.
We recommend using a balanced, all purpose soil, which is nutrient rich, creating the best possible environment for your spring onion to grow. All purpose soil is usually quite fine, which allows water to drain through very well, which makes it the perfect soil to use at home.
As well as this, you will need to purchase an organic fertilizer, if you haven’t already got some. Mixing the fertilizer in with your soil will help your spring onion to grow strong and healthy, which even helps it to grow big too.
Planting spring onion seeds
The next spring onion growing stages is the planting of your spring onion seeds. Once you have prepared the soil, you’ll need to fill your pots about 3\4 of the way up, pressing down on it slightly so it’s nice and firm.
The second step is to poke some holes into the soil surface, where there should be at least 1 inch between every hole. Each hole should be roughly ¼ inch deep (not very deep at all). Spring onions don’t need much space to grow as their roots are reasonably small for the size of the onion it grows.
Place 1 seed in each hole that you have made, then cover them over with the remaining soil, to fill the holes once again. Make sure they are not covered any more than ½ an inch deep. Spring onions need to grow above the soil as much as possible, therefore only the small bulb should be buried once fully grown.
Feeding and Watering
The following spring onions growing stages is the maintenance of feeding and watering, which you’ll have to continue throughout the growing process.
Please note that you can over water your spring onion seeds. Too much water will have an adverse effect on their growth, and can leave the plant prone to disease.
You’ll need to water your spring onion plant every 2 days, with a small amount of water. The soil should never be soaked through, but should also continuously stay moist. Somewhere right in between wet and dry.
After about 4 weeks from planting your seeds, you will need to fertilize the soil once again. Use the packs guide on amounts you should use in relation to the amount of soil you have. This will be the only time that you need to re-fertilize the soil.
Breaching the surface
The second to last spring onion growing stages is the plant breaching the surface soil. Within 1-2 weeks you should start to see your spring onion breaching the surface soil. This can happen sooner, but this depends on the plant’s environmental factors (soil health, water, sunlight).
From this stage you can give a sigh of relief, because your spring onions are growing correctly, at the right speed. You should see your spring onions start to sprout up pretty quickly, growing 1 inch every week from this point onwards.
The final spring onion growing stages is harvesting. After only 8 weeks of planting your seeds, your spring onions should be roughly 6 inches tall. From this point, they are ready to be harvested whenever you like.
You can leave them to grow a little longer if you wish, but they will get stronger in taste too, so it’s really down to your preference.
To harvest your spring onion, simply grab the onion as close to the soil as possible, and pull. Planting the seeds in shallow soil makes harvesting the easiest part of the cycle. The entire onion, with roots included, will come straight up, ready for you to wash before consuming.
If you wish to continue growing the spring onions, then you can cut the sprouted leaves off, roughly 1 inch about the soil. The spring onion will continue to grow and sprout some more, but this does mean the bulb will also grow in size, strengthening the taste. The cycles will begin again, and you should have further spring onions ready in another 7 weeks.
Remember to thoroughly wash the onion before use to get rid of any toxins which it may be carrying.
How Long Do Spring Onions Take To Grow?
Spring onions are one of the quickest onions to grow out of all the varieties. So it’s no wonder you’re probably thinking, how long do spring onions take to grow at home?
Spring onions usually take 8 weeks to mature to the stage where they are ready to eat. In comparison to the red or white onion which takes roughly 14 weeks. Not only this, but spring onions can be grown all year round if they are grown indoors, which is much harder to do with other varieties due to their size.
Spring onions, also known as green onions and scallions, are a type of bulb-shaped vegetable that grow from seeds. Spring onions grow from bulbs which store energy through the winter so they can produce new tops and continue growing in the next season. The tops die back once they have produced flowers but the roots remain in the ground over the winter where they absorb nutrients from the soil until they are ready to grow again. How long does it take for onions to mature?
It depends on what type of onion you’re growing and where you live. In general, green onions or scallions will mature in about 8 weeks while large yellow onions can take anywhere from 6-8 months to mature. Here is some more information about how long spring onions take to grow:
Time: 10-14 days
Conditions: Temperature of 70-80 degrees F (21-27 C), humidity between 50-70 percent
Spring Onion Growing Problems
There are numerous reasons why your spring onions may not be growing as you expected. Here we have highlighted the 8 most common spring onion growing problems which you may likely have.
All of these problems can be avoided with the right amount of care and attention, and usually are due to human error or negligence.
Please read these spring onion growing problems before trying to grow your own at home, to increase your chance of growth yield.
The 7 main reasons of spring onion growing problems
- Transplanting at the wrong time
- Too Much Water
- Not Enough Space
- Not Enough Sunlight
- Incorrect Soil and Fertilizer
- Planting Seeds Too Deep
- Broken Stems
Transplanting at the wrong time
When transplanting your spring onion seeds, timing is crucial. If you try to transplant them prematurely, then the plant may not grow at all. The plant will be feeding on the surrounding nutrients and any change in location may offset its diet. This is also the same when it comes to temperature and pH levels too.
Before transplanting your spring onions, you should always wait for shoots to have sprouted at least 2 inches before relocating it. At this stage your spring onion plant should be strong enough to withstand the transplanting process.
Too Much Water
Just like any other vegetable plant out there, spring onions can be over watered, which can have catastrophic consequences. This is most likely to affect planted seeds rather than mature plants, as the seeds will soak up more water than they need, theoretically drowning itself.
Remember that spring onions should be water little but often, keeping the surrounding soil moist, but not completely soaked.
Not Enough Space
Spring onions seeds should be planted no closer than 1-2 inches to begin with. Sometimes due to their size, some people like to load their pots with as many seeds as possible, with multiple seeds in one hole. Do not do this!
Give each seed its own space, and allow it the room it needs to grow. Spring onions will only grow as big as their environment allows them too. The roots aren’t that long, but they need to be able to spread out to gather as much water as possible, and won’t like having to compete with other roots for it.
Not Enough Sunlight
You would be very misinformed if you believe that spring onions don’t need a lot of sunlight. In fact, they love the sun and need lots of it. Spring onions need a full day of sun, or roughly 8 hours a day, especially within the first 4 weeks of growing.
Keep in mind when planting your spring onions, not to put them too close to any bushy plants which may grow to cover their sunlight. Equally, if you’re growing your spring onions indoors, then they should be placed in a south facing window if possible for maximum sunlight hours.
Incorrect Soil and Fertilizer
Some soils simply don’t have the correct nutrients or pH levels to grow spring onions. Unfortunately you can’t just plant spring onion seeds in any soil. Planting a seed in soil with a pH level which is outside of the 6.0 – 7.0 range will struggle to develop.
Equally this is the same with fertilizer. The wrong type could have negative growth effects for your spring onions seeds. We recommend using an organic ‘granular general purpose fertilizer’ which is safe to use on most home grown vegetables.
Planting Seeds Too Deep
A spring onion seed is very determined to find sunlight, however they are also very stubborn. The first shoots that sprout will only grow up to 2 inches before they stop, if they haven’t already reached sunlight. More shoots may start to grow in other directions, but will unlikely breach the soil surface.
The difference in temperature between the top level of soil, and the under layers of soil will give the shoots a direction to heat in. Planting them too deep in cooler temperatures may result in non-growth.
A spring onion with a broken stem may not continue to grow. The reason for this is that the green leaves of the spring onions produce sugars which feed the bulb below the soil. When these leaves are broken off, the bulb is starved from the much needed sugars, prompting the possible death of the bulb.
You know a spring onion is ready to harvest, when the very exterior leaves start to fall. This signals that the spring onion growing stages are complete and the plant is no longer soaking up water from the surrounding soil.