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ALLIUM ramosum

Image of Allium ramosum

International Flower Bulb Centre

Family

Liliaceae

Botanical Name

ALLIUM ramosum

Plant Common Name

Chinese Chives

General Description

An ornamental onion that bears beautiful snowy flowers in summer, this hardy bulbous perennial is a less invasive relative of garlic chives (Allium tuberosum). It is native to the steppes of Central Asia.

Arising from a slender, cylindrical bulb with netted fibers, the semicircular, hollow, edible leaves of this ornamental onion clasp the base of the shin- to knee-high flower stem. The numerous white, cup-shaped flowers cluster atop the stem on ascending stalks, forming a shuttlecock-shaped umbel. The sweetly scented blooms attract bees and butterflies. Papery tan capsules with black seeds follow the flowers. Some self-sowing may occur.

Plant Chinese chives in full sun and fertile, well drained soil. This ornamental onion is a natural for the herb or vegetable garden, but also works well in purely ornamental plantings.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    8 - 1

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    3 - 8

  • Plant Type

    Bulb or Corm or Tuber

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun

  • Height

    10"-20" / 25.4cm - 50.8cm

  • Width

    6"-12" / 15.2cm - 30.5cm

  • Bloom Time

    Late Spring, Early Summer, Summer

  • Native To

    Russia/Siberia, Central Asia

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral, Alkaline

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Loam, Sand

  • Growth Rate

    Medium

  • Water Requirements

    Average Water

  • Habit

    Upright/Erect

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Flower Color

    White

  • Fruit Color

    Yellow Green, Tan

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Green, Light Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Green

  • Fragrant Flowers

    Yes

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    Yes

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    Yes

  • Flower Petal Number

    Single

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    No

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    No

  • Foliage Texture

    Fine

  • Foliage Sheen

    Matte

  • Evergreen

    No

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Cutflower, Edible, Herb / Vegetable, Mixed Border

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Attracts

    Butterflies

  • Self-Sowing

    Yes