Sizing up Shallots


This delicious member of the onion family with its mild onion flavour can be eaten fresh or cooked and is happy to grow wherever onions grow.


Getting Started

Shallots are available as bulbs from mid May till the end of June. The traditional time for planting is the shortest day of the year but they can be planted throughout winter. Shallots require a sunny position with well drained soil. Condition the soil before planting by adding compost and General Garden Fertiliser to the soil.


Where to plant

  • Shallots can be planted in the vegetable garden provided they get a reasonable amount of sunshine each day.
  • The soil should be fertile and free draining. Improve heavy soils by the addition of compost or peat.
  • Shallots can also be grown in large troughs or containers. Fill pots with Daltons Premium Potting Mix.
  • Use a good all-purpose plant food in the garden, and a slow release general fertiliser like Yate Acticote in pots and containers.


How to Plant

  • Divide into single bulbs before planting
  • Press each bulb firmly into the soil, leave top ½ above the ground
  • Space 10cm apart, 25 cm between rows
  • Each bulb will produce 6-12 new bulbs



  • Harvest when leaves wither back to the neck of bulb, in mid-summer
  • Store in a cool airy place, tied on strings or in string bags

Cooking with Shallots

  • Roast Shallots in their skins until soft—then peel and eat with the meal.
  • Sautee shallots gently, being careful not to burn as this can make them bitter.
  • Use shallots in dishes where you are using wine.
  • Three or four Shallots can be substituted for one medium sized onion.
  • Eating Shallots will not give you bad breath as Garlic does.