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Allium ursinum
  • RHS Plants for pollinators

ramsons

Vigorous, garlic-scented, bulbous perennial forming extensive colonies, with paired, elliptic leaves and erect stems bearing umbels of starry white flowers in late spring. Often naturalised in woodland, this attractive but rather weedy onion, native to Europe and Asia is occasionally cultivated intentionally but invariably becomes a nuisance, as it spreads freely by both bulbils and seeds

Other common names
bear's garlic
buckrams
see moregipsy onion
hog's garlic
ramsomes
wild garlic
wild leek
wood garlic
Synonyms
Allium ucrainicum
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Size
Ultimate height
0.1–0.5 metres
Time to ultimate height
2–5 years
Ultimate spread
0.5–1 metres
Growing conditions
Chalk
Loam
Sand
Moisture
Moist but well–drained, Well–drained
pH
Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring White Green
Summer Green
Autumn
Winter
Position
  • Full sun
Aspect

South–facing or West–facing or North–facing or East–facing

Exposure
Sheltered
Hardiness
H7
Botanical details
Family
Amaryllidaceae
Native to the UK
Yes
Foliage
Deciduous
Habit
Clump forming
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
Europe, Russia

How to grow

Cultivation

Easy to grow in fertile well-drained soil, but this species spreads easily and has the potential to become a nuisance see wild garlic control

Propagation

Propagate by seed or division

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • Wildlife gardens
  • Wildflower meadow
Pruning

No pruning required

Pests

Generally pest-free

Diseases

Generally disease-free but may be susceptible to onion white rot and downy mildews

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