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Onion, Walla Walla Sweet

Short Description

Big round onions with sweet, mild, juicy flesh. The best mild choice for the North.

Full Description

Famous for its mild flavor, this long-day sweet onion was a mainstay at our farm market. The only northern onion ever to match the famous Vidalia types for quality. Well grown bulbs can reach 2 lb. apiece and will store 2-3 months. 75 plants per bunch.
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Item # Product
Item#: 14985
Order: 2 bunches (150 plants)
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Buy 2 or More for $19.99 each
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Product properties

Type Some flowers and vegetables fall into subcategories that may define how they grow (such as pole or bush), what they are used for (such as slicing tomatoes or shelling peas), flower type, or other designations that will help you select the type of a class of plant that you are looking for.

Long Day

Days To Maturity The average number of days from when the plant is actively growing in the garden to the expected time of harvest.

80-90 days

Fruit Size The average size of the fruit produced by this product.

4-6 inches

Sun The amount of sunlight this product needs daily in order to perform well in the garden. Full sun means 6 hours of direct sun per day; partial sun means 2-4 hours of direct sun per day; shade means little or no direct sun.

Full Sun

Spread The width of the plant at maturity.

4 inches

Height The typical height of this product at maturity.

10-12 inches

Plant Shipping Information

Plants begin shipping week of:

Mar 05, 2018

Click here for Spring shipping schedule


Item 14985 cannot ship to: AA, AE, AK, AP, AS, CN, FM, GU, HI, MH, MP, PR, PW, VI
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Organic Gardening Basics
Organic gardening means growing using all natural methods. We explain the basics to get you started.
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  • Onions

    Start Indoors Start Indoors Starting seeds indoors is called Indoor Sow or Indirect Sow and these dates are when to sow seeds indoors in the spring or summer
    Transplant Transplant When to transplant bulbs or roots in the garden for spring
    Start Outdoors Start Outdoors Starting seeds outdoors is called Outdoor Sow or Direct Sow and these dates are when to sow seeds outdoors in the spring or summer
    Start Indoors Fall Start Indoors Fall Starting seeds indoors in the fall called Indoor Sow or Indirect Sow and these dates are when to sow seeds outdoors in the fall
    Transplant Fall Transplant Fall Transplant Fall-When to transplant bulbs or roots in the garden for fall
    Start Outdoors Fall Start Outdoors Fall Starting seeds outdoors in the fall is called Outdoor Sow or Direct Sow and these dates are when to sow seeds outdoors in the fall
    First Date: Aug-06 - Last Date: Sep-17
    First Date: Feb-22 - Last Date: Mar-07
    First Date: Mar-07 - Last Date: May-02

How to Sow and Plant

Onions may be grown from seed, from young bare root plants or from sets (small bulbs). Make sure to choose the correct variety for your day length. Southern gardeners should select Short Day varieties; Northern gardeners do best with Long Day varieties; gardeners in the middle of the country should select Intermediate Day varieties, but can use some Short Day varieties.

Sowing Seed Indoors

  • Onion seed may be started indoors in small flats in seed starting mix 6-10 weeks before the last frost.
  • Sow thinly and cover with ¼ inch of seed starting formula. Keep moist and maintain a temperature of about 60-65 degrees F.
  • Seedlings emerge in 7-14 days.
  • As soon as seedlings emerge, provide plenty of light on a sunny windowsill or grow seedlings 3-4 inches beneath fluorescent plant lights turned on 16 hours per day, off for 8 hours at night. Raise the lights as the plants grow. Incandescent bulbs do not work because they get too hot. Most plants require a dark period to grow, do not leave lights on for 24 hours.
  • Seedlings do not need much fertilizer, feed when they are 3-4 weeks old using a starter solution (half strength of a complete indoor houseplant food) according to manufacturer’s directions.
  • After danger of a heavy frost plant the seedlings in the garden when they are about the thickness of a pencil. Before planting in the garden, seedling plants need to be “hardened off”. Accustom young plants to outdoor conditions by moving them to a sheltered place outside for a week. Be sure to protect them from wind and hot sun at first. If frost threatens at night, cover or bring containers indoors, then take them out again in the morning. This hardening off process toughens cell structure and reduces transplant shock and sun burn.
  • Space 3-4 inches apart in rows 1-2 feet apart. Plant more closely if you plan to harvest scallions.

Soil Preparation in the Garden

  • Choose a location in full sun where you did not plant onions the previous year.
  • Apply a balanced fertilizer and work into the soil prior to planting. Onions prefer a pH of 6.0 – 7.0.
  • Onions prefer an organic soil that drains well. Work organic matter into your soil at least 6-8 inches deep, removing stones, then level and smooth.

Sowing Directly in the Garden

  • Sow onion seeds in average soil in full sun after danger of frost in spring. In frost free areas, sow in fall.
  • Sow thinly in rows 1- 2 feet apart and cover with ¼ inch of fine soil. Firm lightly and keep evenly moist.
  • Seedlings emerge in 7-14 days.
  • Thin to stand about 3 inches apart when seedlings are 1- 2 inches high.

From Plants

  • Burpee ships small onion plants about 10 to 12 weeks old in early spring. Plant onion plants as soon as possible after you receive them, as soon as the soil can be worked, before the last frost.
  • Plant onion plants 1 inch deep, 5 – 6 inches apart, or 2 – 3 inches if you prefer to thin later for green onions or scallions. Water well.

From Sets

  • Just press sets into the soil up to their tops, barely covered with soil 3-4 inches apart in rows 1-2 feet apart. If sets are planted too deeply they will take longer to develop.

How to Grow

  • Keep weeds under control during the growing season. Weeds compete with plants for water, space and nutrients, so control them by either cultivating often or use a mulch to prevent their seeds from germinating.
  • Ample water is important at all stages of growth, especially when bulbs are forming. Onions are shallow rooted and tend to dry out during periods of drought. The best method to water is by ditch or furrow irrigation. This provides water to the roots while keeping the tops dry. If the tops are regularly wet they are more susceptible to disease.
  • Onions are heavy feeders, side dress with fertilizer about six weeks after planting.
  • Monitor for pests and diseases. Check with your local Cooperative Extension Service for pest controls recommended for your area.

Harvest and Preserving Tips

  • Pick green onions (scallions) when plants reach 6-8" tall, while the stalks are still white at the bottom and fairly thin.
  • When harvesting onion bulbs, about 100 days from sowing, bend the tops over when about ¼ of the tops have already fallen over and turned yellow. After a few days, pull the bulbs and cover them with the foliage to prevent sunburn.
  • Allow onions to dry in the garden for up to a week, then cure them indoors in a warm, dry place with good air circulation for 2-3 weeks. Then cut off the foliage, leaving 1" above the top of the bulb.
  • Clean the bulbs by removing dirt and any of the papery skin that comes loose when you handle them.
  • Put bulbs in mesh onion bags or old pantyhose and store in a cool, dry location. Check occasionally for any wet spots or mold and remove any damaged bulbs immediately to protect the rest.
  • All onions lose their pungency when cooked. To neutralize the flavor, sauté, parboil or microwave the onions briefly before adding to your recipe.
  • To minimize the discomfort of onion tears while chopping onions, work fast (but carefully!) and work closely to the kitchen fan. You can also use a food processor.
  • Besides fresh storage, small onions may be canned by the hot pack method.
  • Chopped, sliced or grated onions may be quickly dried in a food dehydrator and stored in air-tight containers on the pantry shelf.
  • Small whole onions may also be pickled, while larger ones may be used in mixed pickles or to flavor cucumber or tomato pickles.
Long Day
Days To Maturity
80-90 days
Fruit Size
4-6 inches
Full Sun
4 inches
10-12 inches
Sow Method
Direct Sow
Planting Time
Sow Time
2-4 weeks BLF
4 inches
Onion, Walla Walla Sweet is rated 4.8 out of 5 by 20.
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Easy to grow These onions have again provided a nice crop of consistently sized and flavorful onions. In our sandy soil in Northern Michigan I did a lot of watering this summer but it was worth it. I have enough onions to share with friends and neighbors and they all agree that these are the best.
Date published: 2016-09-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Walla Wow This year was my first try at onions and I couldn't be happier with how this variety turned out. Every plant took, whether in the garden or in a Smart Pot. I now regret not having more space for ample excess plants! By size, I'd classify the yield as 15% large, 75% medium-large and 10% small. Of the roughly 90 harvested, only two didn't make it to storage; only one has gone squishy since, some two months later. The flavor is amazing - sweet and creamy. Definitely recommend.
Date published: 2016-09-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Delicious! Huge onions with outstanding flavor. By far the best onions I have ever tasted. Excellent germination too. I'll be planting twice as many next year!
Date published: 2016-08-20
Rated 4 out of 5 by from great onions, poor shipping These took forever to ship. The first time I called, about 2 weeks after I placed the order, the nice lady I talked to said that the onions were coming from a vendor in Texas and it takes 2-3 weeks just to ship. Firstly, that is ridiculous. I ordered the onions on March 22nd. The shipping start date for onions for my zone was March 11th. The next day, after having slept on it, I decided that I would cancel my order and go to the farm store down the street and buy bulbs. So I called again, this time I spoke to a nice gentleman that said “Why cancel? The order shipped yesterday.” Of course it shipped after I called. Isn’t that how it goes? Anyways, my onions arrived and surprise! They’re not bulbs. They’re starts. I kind of already knew they weren’t going to be bulbs, but when you search for onions and select the “bulb” option you expect you’re going to receive bulbs, not starts. I am really quite disappointed. I really wanted to try bulbs/something new this year. Besides the terribly long shipping times and the bulb/start confusion these onions were great. The weather this year was so awful. We didn’t really get a warm summer here in the Northwest. We got a lot of under 70 days. I feel that the weather prevented the onions from becoming as large as they could have. BUT I did get a couple that were about 12 ounces. Most were 8-10 ounces though. I will be using them in salsa and freezing the rest (for burgers and what not) instead of curing them.
Date published: 2016-08-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Walla Walla onion set We enjoyed these tasty onion from green stage to maturity. After harvesting, they stayed fresh in the garage for 4 months. They may lasted longer but we ate them all. Highly recommended. They do great in Anchorage, Alaska.
Date published: 2015-03-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Nice and sweet, easy to grow! Since I am not an expert gardener, I usually don't spend this much on seeds, but for some reason I decided to try these. I was pleasantly surprised by how easy they were to grow. When the really hot and dry weather hit and the tops died, we harvested a bunch and still have a few left. But we left a few in the ground. When the rains came back they started to grow again, but of course the onion bulbs are no good anymore for eating. Since they are not very tall or wide, I planted mine along the walking path through my garden for easy picking as I needed them. It is true they don't store as long, but the reviews tell you that up front. Even so, we still have not had to buy onions for about 4 months. Delicious. I am sorry I have to go back to buying lesser onions soon. Looking forward to them again this next growing season.
Date published: 2012-11-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Garden Standard This is a great home grown onion that is usually expensive to buy at the grocery store. I plant this one every year. They are easy to grow and can be harvested for several months. They don't keep as long as the Spanish types but the taste is worth it!
Date published: 2010-01-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from SWEET & BIG I grew so many Wala Wala Sweet that I gave some away. My friends said thye were very sweet. They grew large, like a baseball. Some say they were better then the ones gotten in the grocery store.
Date published: 2009-01-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Definitely a favorite! My crop just finished curing, and I'm so happy to report that these onions are simply wonderful! I made both soup and salsa this past weekend, and their addition made the day. It'll be hard to go back to store bought onions after enjoying these beauties!
Date published: 2008-07-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Nice big onions I don't think these are supposed to grow here in North Carolina. They grew to a good size and tasted great, but didn't store well. Those I left in the ground too long, just rotted away. My fault! I'm still looking for an onion with that "old world" flavour that will grow well here.
Date published: 2008-01-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Best Onion's Its 4/1/07 and we still have a couple of Walla Walla onions from last years crop in our old Refrigerator from last years crop. (They keep if you store them in the cold) These are the are the best eating onions that I ever had!
Date published: 2007-04-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wonderfully sweet... Planted a small crop of these mid-May,The plants were sturdy,strong and growing great immediately.We have just begun to harvest some of the sweetest,best tasting onions I've ever had.I can hardly wait to plant more!!!
Date published: 2006-08-01
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