Allium: surprising & versatile
Introducing the Allium family. Appreciate each one of these round ornamental onions!
Alliums are available in many different varieties: from tiny to enormous, from pure white to deep dark purple. And they are all great to work with. The diva of the allium family is Allium schubertii. All attention is drawn to its blade-like flowers. They can also be dried and they look just like stars – perfect for Christmas!
Allium is a bulbous plant. The name allium dates back to Roman days. Allium means onion or garlic. The allium ornamental onion) is actually related to the common onion, chives, garlic, wild garlic and leek.
Availability & care
Alliums are available all year round, but they are most diverse in the summer. If the stems of the allium are damaged, they give off a characteristic onion smell. You can minimise this effect by putting the stems in water immediately after they are cut.
“It is always a stunning sight when the flowers come out; a whole field of them. You can harvest them in different stages: from raw – with the first hints of colour appearing at the top – to full bloom. The more mature the flowers are the longer they maintain their colour”, says grower and breeder Ton Langedijk. “We have developed most of our alliums ourselves. In our own range we have some real winners such as ‘Ambassador’: a strong allium with a beautiful deep purple colour.”