How Long Do Onions Take To Grow?

Onions are very productive crops that can yield a handsome harvest in minimum space and with minimum effort. How long do onions take to grow? That depends on the variety you plant and how you start the plants, the growing time will vary significantly. There are different ways to start onions, transplants, seeds, and sets, and each of these takes different times to grow to maturity before you can harvest the bulbs.

Understanding how long onions take to grow will help you choose the best varieties for your climate. It will also help you start them at just the right time to reach maturity before the temperatures start dropping in the fall. 

Depending on the variety, onions can take anywhere between 50 to 125 days to reach maturity.

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How Long Do Onions Take To Grow

Onion Growing Times For Three Planting Choices

When starting an onion garden, you have three options. You can either grow them from seeds, transplants, or onion sets. Let’s see how the length of the growing season varies with the different techniques to start onions. 

Onion Seeds

Seeds will take the longest growing season, so it’s only for the patient gardeners. Unless you have a long, warm growing season, you should start seeds indoors 6 to 8 weeks before the last expected spring frost. You can transplant seedlings in the garden once they are about 3-inches tall. Growing onions from seeds can take over 5 months. However, since the growing time also varies with the variety, you may be able to harvest sooner if you grow one of the short-season varieties or scallions.  

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Onion Transplants

Transplants are onion seedlings that take over 2 months to grow into full-sized onion bulbs. To save some time and effort in starting seeds indoors, you can buy transplants from online retailers and directly plant them in the garden once there’s no danger of frost. 

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Onion Sets

Growing onions from sets is easier and faster than seeds and transplants. Onion sets are less prone to diseases and can reach maturity in just about 2 months, depending on the variety. Mature onions are ready to come out of the ground once the tops brown and fall over.

Growing Times For Different Onion Varieties 

How Long Do Onions Take To Grow

Here are some of the most common onion varieties to grow along with their days to maturity when started from seeds:

Onion Seed VarietyDays To Maturity
Rossa di Milano100
Golden Star F1 Hybrid180
Great Western110
New York Early98
Red Carpet115
Ailsa Craig110
Italian Torpedo110
Walla Walla90
Red Burgundy110


So now you know the answer to how long onions take to grow. Depending on whether you can provide a long growing season or not, choose the best varieties for your climate along with the right technique to start them. 

2 thoughts on “How Long Do Onions Take To Grow?”

  1. I wish they had photos of the different types of onions next to their formal names… I only know “white”, “sweet” and “yellow” :/


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