I came home with over a pound of onion sets at a very, very deep discount.
There are three ways to buy onions: seeds, sets, and plants. Sets are what you'll probably find at the store, although I saw bundles of plants the day that I bought these sets. Sets will give you onions long before seeds will, and if your garden isn't quite ready to plant, or the weather isn't perfect yet, sets will wait better than plants will. Sets are simply onion plants that have been started from seed and then dried, to be planted in your garden at home. Sets can be any variety, just like onion seeds and onion plants are.
Plant onion sets one inch deep and six inches apart in each direction. You can plant them slightly closer together if you plan to harvest some early as green onions, so that you are thinning the row as you harvest. The remaining onions will have enough room to form bulbs.
Grass and weeds compete with onions for moisture and nutrients, so keep the bed well-weeded.
I planted over half of the sets in the onion bed. I gave half of what was left to a friend when she visited, and tucked the rest randomly among the tomato and pepper plants.
Earlier in spring I'd bought yellow and purple onion sets. They've been in the ground awhile and are growing well. The new sets are white onions. In my house, you can never have enough onions. It's a little late to put onions in the ground, but for that price I'll take a chance.
My hope is to inspire you, and to encourage your homesteading plans and your dreams of a