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Allium tuberosum
  • RHS Plants for pollinators

Chinese chives

A vigorous bulbous plant forming a clump of narrow, edible leaves, with umbels of small, fragrant, star-shaped white flowers in late summer and autumn

Other common names
fragrant-flowered garlic
garlic chives
see moreoriental garlic
Synonyms
Allium uliginosum G. Don. non Ledeb.
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Size
Ultimate height
0.1–0.5 metres
Time to ultimate height
1 year
Ultimate spread
0.1–0.5 metres
Growing conditions
Loam
Moisture
Moist but well–drained
pH
Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Green
Summer White Green
Autumn White Green
Winter
Position
  • Full sun
Aspect

South–facing or West–facing

Exposure
Sheltered
Hardiness
H5
Botanical details
Family
Amaryllidaceae
Native to the UK
No
Foliage
Deciduous
Habit
Bushy
Genus

Allium are bulbous herbaceous perennials with a strong onion or garlic scent, linear, strap-shaped or cylindrical basal leaves and star-shaped or bell-shaped flowers in an umbel on a leafless stem

Name status

Correct

Plant range
Himalaya China

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How to grow

Cultivation

Grow in fertile moisture retentive well-drained soil in full sun. See allium cultivation for further advice

Propagation

Propagate by seed sown as soon as ripe or in spring in a cold frame. Divide clumps in early spring or remove offsets in autumn

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • City and courtyard gardens
  • Coastal
  • Patio and container plants
  • Cottage and informal garden
  • Rock garden
  • Flower borders and beds
Pruning

No pruning required

Pests

Susceptible to slugs, snails, allium leaf mining fly and onion fly but usually trouble free in the border

Diseases

Susceptible to onion white rot and downy mildew but usually trouble free in the border

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