Having partly convinced myself that the risk of serious frost must be fading by now, and that the onion seedlings were (a) reasonably hardy and (b) desperately crowded and needing to get out of the seed tray, I planted them out this weekend.
I’m not sure they survived the process terribly well; my fingers aren’t anywhere near green enough to transplant them like that without them suffering considerable trauma – especially as I’d never got around to thinning them out. Time will tell if they get it together (right now they’re lying down in a not-very-happy way) but I think the big lesson for me here is to start seedlings off in pots or similar, so I don’t kill them when I come to plant them out.
Oh well, I still have plenty of seeds so even if they die, I started early enough that I can recover!
On a brighter note, I’d sown the early cabbages more carefully and they seem to have transplanted quite happily into pots – I’m now eagerly awaiting their first true leaves to appear, which is (apparently!) when you’re supposed to plant them out.
Lastly on the planting front, I came across an old packet of spring onions so I put in a row of them behind the dying onions – the theory being that they crop quickly, and because I can sow them direct into the ground I don’t need to worry about transplanting them later.