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How to Grow Spring Onions (Scallions)

How to Grow Spring Onions
Filed Under: Growing Edibles How-To

Update (Jan 2014): First posted in Feb 2011, now updated with new photos.

Even though I consider myself pretty hopeless in gardening (no modesty here, I killed MANY plants over the years), spring onions are what I grow on a regular basis. They are just so easy to grow! You only need soil, shallots and lots of sun. They are grown without fertilizer, pesticides or chemicals. May I say they are organic? Most people will probably throw away aged sprouted shallots but I am so happy to see them – I knew that they were the perfect candidates for growing spring onions. Here’s a step-by-step photo guide for growing your own spring onions.

See Also:
Recipes to use your scallion harvest on:

A note about terminology. Most places use the terms ‘spring onion’ & ‘scallion’ interchangeably. However, some make a distinction between the two – scallions do not have a bulb whereas spring onions do, though both belong to the onion family. Going by this definition, the spring onion sold in Singapore will be more accurately termed scallions BUT we always call them spring onions here. In the post title, I’m using the terms interchangeably. If there is any terminology disparity, it is just how different countries term them.

How to Grow Spring Onions (Scallions): Step-by-Step Photos!


For the uninitiated, spring onions are grown from shallots (small red onions). These are regular unsprouted shallots that are typically used in cooking.

How to Grow Spring Onions (Sprouted Shallots)

Sometimes we have sprouted shallots in the pantry and they are actually the easiest and fastest for growing spring onions because the process has already started. You can try asking the vegetable grocer at the wet market if they can give you some sprouted shallots since they will be discarded anyway. The bulb is actually the food for the plant, so the bigger the bulb, the better your spring onions will grow.  The bulb will shrink over time as the shoots absorb the nutrients from the bulb.

How to Grow Spring Onions

In a pot of soil, plant to submerge the shallots, leaving some space between each shallot.

How to Grow Spring Onions

This is what my pot of spring onions looked like after 6 days. If you are growing from unsprouted shallots, they will take longer.

How to Grow Spring Onions

This is what my pot of spring onions looked like after 10 days. I have started to cut them for use.

How to Grow Spring Onions

At about 20 days, I harvested the spring onions to keep in the fridge. At this point in time, even if you don’t harvest them, they will start to wither in the pot, so it is better to harvest when they are still looking good. As for the bulbs in the soil, I discarded them. If you don’t discard, they will continue to sprout from where you cut and baby shallots will sprout in the soil – but to me, the process is long-drawn and messy, so I prefer to grow new spring onions by repeating the process.

How to Grow Spring Onions

P.S. I don’t know much about gardening. I’m simply growing them (mainly edibles such as mint and coriander) so that they can come in handy for my cooking and photo shoots. I am sharing my successful gardening projects to share with those who are interested to grow their own foods. Therefore, I apologize in advance for not being able to give any good advice on plant care, except for what type of conditions worked for me.

69 comments on “How to Grow Spring Onions (Scallions)”

  1. Hi Wiffy,
    Wondering if you have experience growing chilli, and if so,can you PLEEEEASE post them? Like you, I am more a plant murderer than gardener, so your success stories on mint an spring onions inspire me to try, try again. Of course, using these ingredients regularly, but sparingly makes growing my own more economical than buying bags of condiments, and letting them rot due to underuse.

    Thanks so much!! (Hope you try, and are successful!)

    • Hi, sorry I have bad experience with growing chilli too, as they are susceptible to pests. So I killed all my previous chilli plants T_T

  2. Sincerely,I really enjoyed reading from you.for the two things I read from how to grow mint leave and spring onion or scallion.I have gotten enough.I will definitely put it into practise.I hope to get more details of planting from you,because I enjoy fresh grown vegetables.And with these I can go anywhere with my plant when am relocating from an apartmemt to another.Thanks

  3. Pingback: How to Grow Mint (Step-by-Step Photos)

  4. Hi, just wanted to say that your website is truly wonderful and thanks for sharing your knowledge:) may I know where did you get that rack to attach to the wall? I know its not really related to the post but think I need that to start gardening. Thanks!

    • I got it from Far East Flora (the one located at Tanah Merah). Yes, it is quite useful at least for me (get more sun in that position).

  5. Hi hi,

    Thanks for sharing! This is very useful indeed! :D

  6. Hello there! thanks for sharing this! May I know where do you get organic fertilizer from?

    • Hi! I got mine from Far East Flora nursery at Tanah Merah. But I believe many nurseries sell some form of organic fertilizer.

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  8. Pingback: Growing Spring Onions (easy tips): Nature Bring - Nature Bring

  9. LOVE the n00b-friendly tips especially as I have killed the hardiest of plants before ????

  10. Pingback: How to grow spring Onion in a container | Growing spring Onion - NatureBring

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