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Help!! I have never grown onions before and i have flower buds appearing on my huge thick onion leaves. Not much bulb to speak of. I am picking off the buds as they appear, should i pull and eat the onions now or will they fatten up. Can i make soup with the whole lot??? please help


The cold spring will be the reason, I don't think you can save bolted veg although you can collect the seed? Don't rip them out before more expert veg growers have commented, but there is still time to plant new crops if that's the only solution


Did you grow these from seed or sets and when did you start them off?

They were sets in the autumn, did really well up until now!


There is no point in saving the seed.

Use the onions that have bolted in the kitchen, they will not store.

There are onion seeds that you can plant now which will give a nice crop of onions before the Autumn.  Have a look in the catalogues or on-line


Thanks guys, i best get cooking. Thanks for your help


The only problem with bolted onions is that they do not store - they use all their energy to make flowers. One of the main reasons fro bolting is disturbed roots - moving them or too dry/wet. Leave them till the bulb is of useable size and you will not have lost out.

Excitable Boy

Some of my spring-planted sets have bolted too, probably due to the extremes of weather/moisture. I can confirm that blairs is correct in that you can just snip off the flower stalk and use the bolted onions first come harvest time.

I have to say that I have grown onions for many years and there are always a few that bolt so I accept it as part of the game. You have to eat some of them first, so it might as well be the bolters!!


Yes, onions are sensitive to the point of being neurotic. At the vaguest possible hint that they might be in jeopardy, the roots decide they'd better slip into reproduction mode and work on producing flowers, hence seed. I've had wildly fluctuating Spring temps and just about my entire crop of about 250 plants is madly trying to reproduce.

Oh dear i only had about 100!


Then you're suffering a bit less than half the frustration I am!

Im in the same boat. We use a lot of onoins so planted loads at least half are bolting. The garlic seems to be behaving.

Excitable Boy
sharonnetley50 wrote (see)

Im in the same boat. We use a lot of onoins so planted loads at least half are bolting. The garlic seems to be behaving.

I have only had 4 out of 74 bolt so far - but it is early in the season for bolting in my experience. I am growing red onions - red baron I think - so don't know if that makes a difference. More likely is that I happened to plant during the warm spell in March and they got established quickly, so didn't mind the cold and wet so much.

Lottery really.

is bolting a bud that forms on the top? it may sound a silly question ..but this is our first season of growing....


I was late putting my sets in the ground this year, no problems to report so far.....thats right carfras...


thanks.. obviously they are still edible? or are they?


edit button not working,

To further add, onions bolt because of temperature fluctuations, red being the worse, use any bolted onions first as these won't store well.

brilliant .. many thanks...