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How to Grow Ornamental Allium Plants


There are several hundred species of Alliums. Alliums are members of the onion family....they ARE the onion family. Among the best known Alliums are chives, onions, garlic, and shallot. For the flower gardener, there are many varieties of Flowering Allium, also called "Flowering Onion".  

This hardy, easy to grow flowering bulb comes in a wide variety of colors, heights and blooming times. Big, multi-floreted, round blooms are produced atop of a tall, sturdy spike. In general, they bloom from late spring to early summer. Once established in your flower garden, they will likely grow for many, many years with little attention.

As an ornamental, the largest, giant varieties are the most sought after. They are also known as Allium Giganteum.

Plant Propagation:

Ornamental Onions, or Alliums, are grown from bulbs. The flower head also produces seeds, but most gardeners plant the easy to handle bulbs.

Plant Allium bulbs in the soil in the spring, as soon as the ground can be worked. Plant them to a depth of twice the diameter of the bulb.

If planting Allium seeds, sow them directly into the garden, planting just 1/8" deep.

How to Grow Ornamental Allium Plants:

Growing Ornamental Alliums is very easy to grow. They like full sun to partial shade. They tolerate poor soils, but prefer it to be well drained. Adding a general purpose fertilizer once in early spring, will give them a boost on the season.

Once your Ornamental Allium plants are established, they should grow well with few problems. Keep the soil moist to slightly dry. Water them during dry periods, once or twice per week. Keep them well weeded, or apply a 2-3 inch layer of mulch around the plants, for a tidy appearance.

Allium plants should come back yearly for many years.

Did You Know? Alliums make good cut flowers. But, they will give off a slight onion scent... no surprise there!

Insect and Disease:

Alliums have few insect or disease problems.


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