Growing usually begins with sowing. The onions can be grown in the same place for multiple years. The tube-like leaves can also be harvested in winter if they are grown in a cold frame or greenhouse. Spring onions have a milder taste than common onions, especially in early summer. Spring onions are available from Germany almost all year round. They thrive in good, permeable soil, are propagated with bulbs and remain in place over winter. Spring onions are not matured and dried like common onions, but are still soft and mild. They are harvested just when the start of a bulb has formed on the plants. The green and white stalks have tube-like leaves like common onions, making them true representatives of the family.
The typical aromatic taste is due to various essential oils and flavourings. Their high levels of potassium, calcium, phosphorus, sodium, iron, vitamins B1, B2 and C and provitamin A make spring onions a healthy treat; nutrients containing sulphur also act as a natural antibiotic.
Both the white flower and the green leaves can be used. Spring onions can be eaten raw, sautéed or boiled as a side vegetable, as a basis or topping for soups, in stews and bakes, as a topping for savoury cakes and quiches, or as a melted cheese and ham topping for meat or vegetables. When cut into rounds like chives, the leaves of spring onions are also excellent for seasoning quark, sauces and salads.
Spring onions should be used as soon as possible, as they wilt quickly. They can only be stored for a very short period: just 1-2 days in a cellar, larder or fridge. The greenish white flowers, which grow together in a spherical blossom, are also edible.