The sweet success of knowing your onions

The sweet success of knowing your onions

Allium 'Purple Rain'

Around the end of May and early June a very distinctive and wonderfully attractive flower group appears. Closely related to the onion family, Alliums are available in a wide range of heights and colours. The popular and the perfectly rounded purple and white Alliums make stunning eye-catching displays.

In general, Alliums are not fussy but generally hardy plants but given the right growing conditions (well drained soils in sunny positions) will reliably produce wonderful displays year after year.  Alliums bulbs are planted in the autumn and congested clumps can be lifted and divided once flowering has finished (Tip: if you wish to avoid seedlings popping up in unwanted places, dead-head flowers before seeds disperse).

Alliums foliage can often look a little unsightly, so for a neater look, grow alliums amongst low growing ground covering shrubs or create wonderful elevated displays behind formal buxus hedging borders. The towering blooms also look well planted randomly in rose gardens and are guaranteed to add a sparkling display in Mediterranean style schemes of lavender, Artemisia and sage. Alliums are nectar rich flowers which will attract bees and hoverflies. Alliums are the ideal stunning focal points for the summer border, try these top performing Alliums:

  • Allium Giganteum (Dense rounded Purple flowers, Ht 170cm) – all time favourite, strikingly tall and impressive
  • Allium Nigrum (Rounded clusters of White flowers, Ht 70cm) – classic style, a good choice to attract beneficial flying insects
  • Allium Purple Rain (Open Purple star shaped flowers , Ht 70-90cm) – the ‘must-have’ Allium of the summer season
  • Allium Mount Everest (Dense White rounded flowers, Ht 90cm) – fashionable, stunning and elegant

Allium 'Nigrum'

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