Wednesday, June 27, 2012

I Love my Alliums

Ah, the lowly onion.  Many people would never believe that these blooms come from the same family as the onion you slice up each night for your dinner.  But they do.

See those little white caps behind the Smoke bush?  It is an allium called 'nigrum'.  At least that is what I ordered.  Here is a close up:
It looks a lot like allium 'Jade eye' to me.  Whatever it is, I like it.

Aren't these  strange flower buds? 
 I have about ten of these. They are called 'hair' allium.  When the flower opens, it looks like a bunch of green scraggly hair!
I love this one, just for its shock factor.

I also have yellow allium Moly 'Sunny Twinkles':
These are short with lemony clusters of tiny star-shaped flowers and are the first to bloom each spring.

Here is 'Christopherii':
It was twice this big the first year.  I planted 8 or 9 of these. This is the only one left after just a few years.

I planted 'drumstick' many years ago:
This one has multipled ten fold.   Here is a nice little bunch from a few years ago:

This little 'azure' is a pretty blue color, but it did not survive in my garden .  I planted 12 of them two years ago and have none left.

I keep replanting the bigger purple-ball varities, but they also never last more than a year or two. 
Look how many I had in 2006:

None of these are left. I have to treat them like annuals if I want to admire them each spring.  I did miss them this year, so I will probably plant a few this fall.

Does anyone else have problems with these coming back?


  1. I don't have any. I love them though but now after reading this post I'm glad it's one more thing I didn't waste money on since they don't come back for long. I always figure there are so many things that are perennial, why waste money on things that aren't. :)

    Cher Sunray Gardens

  2. I like allium also and am going to plant some more in the fall. I agree that some of them do get smaller so if I want them big and lush I just need to plant them every year.


  3. So far the only Allium that hasn't been long lived for me is Azure. Some have to be deadheaded or they spread and create large areas of fine textured onion grass. Christophii is my favorite.

  4. That giant allium has disappeared from my borders too. What's up with that? I love all of the varieties but wonder why they aren't as hardy as their cousin, the wild green onion? Truth be told, I suspect that the young girl who helps me weed has yanked up the bulbs and not come clean!~ love to watch your garden unfold.

  5. I love alliums too, especially the big purple ones. I don't have any and was thinking of planting some, but maybe not if they don't last that long.

  6. I have the same alliums you have... the big globes don't come back for me, and the yellow allium moly, which I loved, hasn't really spread, although it does come back each spring. I love that yours is called Sunny Twinkles!!

    My favorite are the drumstick alliums, just so cute and neat looking, and they do spread and come back each year.

    By the way, I love your smokebush.

  7. I was wanting to try some of the large alliums, but at the price they want for them, I don't think I will if they don't last long.
    They sure are pretty though!


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