Helping You Become a More Successful Gardener
There are lots of reasons to love and hate garlic chives, also called Chinese chives. On the upside, they’re easy to grow, attractive and delicious to eat. The downside is they're impossibly invasive if one doesn't remove their flower heads before they set and drop seed. Each seedhead produces copious amounts of viable, black, wedge-shaped seeds that germinate fast. You’ll be weeding baby garlic chives out of every garden nook and cranny. The plants originate from Southwest China but have become naturalized in many areas of the world, including regions of the American Midwest.
This fast-growing bulbous perennial produces deciduous to semi-evergreen clumps of flat, green, strap-like chives. These have a pungent oniony garlic scent and flavor and can be chopped into spring dishes like standard chives or added to stir fry. In late summer or fall, slender floral scapes rise above the foliage. These become topped with umbels of star-shaped white flowers that are also edible and look pretty in salads. Bees and other insects pollinate the blooms. Papery fruits filled with glossy black, wedge-shaped seeds follow. Be sure to cut the flower scapes back before they set seed.
Grow garlic chives in full sun and well-drained soil with average fertility. Once established, they will tolerate some summer drought. Plant in spring or fall when temperatures and cool and pleasant. Most opt to plant these clump-forming edibles in the herb garden, but they are also pretty enough for sunny rock gardens, ornamental containers or perennial borders.
4 - 9
H1, H2, 1a, 1b, 2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24
Full Sun, Partial Sun
10"-20" / 25.4cm - 50.8cm
4"-6" / 10.2cm - 15.2cm
Late Summer, Early Fall
Southern Asia, China
Green, Yellow Green
Container, Edible, Herb / Vegetable, Mixed Border, Rock Garden / Wall
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