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Fresh onions from your own garden are becoming increasingly popular in Germany. A popular variety of onions that can be stored very well are the flat-round Stuttgart giants, as they ripen late. The yellow onion with white flesh has a medium heat and thrives easily and reliably in the vegetable patch or in the bucket on the balcony.


When is the right time for planting?

So that the onion harvest is crowned with success in summer, either seeds can be sown or onion sets can be planted. For both variants, the soil must be prepared in the autumn of the previous year. Sowing takes place at the beginning of the year. If onion sets are bought, they are planted in the ground in spring.


Preparation of the ground

The Stuttgart giants, botanically Allium cepa, do not make any special demands on the location. They thrive in a sunny spot as well as in partial shade. However, this onion variety does not like too acidic soil. Therefore, you should analyze the soil in the vegetable patch to that effect.

Onions in the vegetable patch

Tip: The easiest way is to buy test strips from a hardware store to analyze the soil.

If the soil is too acidic, you should definitely incorporate lime. You can also carry out further optimization of the soil in autumn. Proceed as follows for the concrete preparation.

  • remove weeds
  • loosen soil
  • Mix in the compost

This allows the soil to recover over the winter and the onion plants get enough nutrients.

crop rotation

Plant Allium cepa, but also other types of onions, in a different place in the vegetable garden each year so that they can also thrive. It is best to keep an interval of three to four years between planting bulbs. Then the ground is ready for the onion again.


Not only the giants themselves, but also their seeds quite well tolerate cold. Therefore, you can sow the seeds at the beginning of the year. It is ideal if the seeds are already in the ground before the beginning of March. Sow the seeds in thin rows and cover them with soil. After about two months, the first cuttings should have developed. Now make sure that the cuttings have enough space. The distance between the plants should be about twenty centimeters.

Tip: If the cuttings are too tight, they must be separated.

Set onion sets

Planting Allium cepa with onion sets is easy. To do this, stick the onion sets into the prepared vegetable patch. In order for the plant bulbs to grow, however, you have to put them properly in the ground. Correct means that the slimmer part of the onion sets is facing up. The bulbous, lower part of the onion sets points downwards. The best time for planting is in spring, from early February to April, depending on the weather. The soil must not be soaked under any circumstances.

fresh onions from our own garden

Tip: This type of onion can also be planted in autumn, from late September to mid-October.

In order for Allium cepa to grow well, the individual bulbs need a lot of space. The distance between the rows should be twenty and between the individual onion sets ten centimeters. The planting depth is three to four centimetres.

Tip: Plant the onion sets so deep in the ground that the tip of each bulb is just visible.

Onion in the bucket

If you don't have a garden, you can also cultivate Allium cepa in a bucket on the balcony. Make sure that the individual onion sets have enough space to grow.


The giants do not require much maintenance. If the soil is well prepared, they don't need any additional fertilizer either. When watering, care must be taken to avoid waterlogging, because the giants cannot tolerate this at all. A mixed culture in the vegetable patch helps against pests. This keeps the common onion fly away from the scent of the carrot herb. Marigolds and marigolds help prevent fungal diseases. When cultivating in a bucket, care must be taken to ensure that Allium cepa gets enough water.


Depending on when you plant the onion sets, the harvest takes place as follows.

  • Spring planting: Harvest in July / August
  • Autumn planting: Harvest possible as early as April / May as spring onions
harvested onions

After the onions have been harvested, they remain in the bed for a few days to dry off. Then they are freed from the rest of the soil by hand or with a very soft brush. So they can be stored in a box in a dark and cool room.

Tip: The onion variety Allium cepa can also be overwintered or stored outdoors. But then it has to be protected against snow and moisture.

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