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I fell in love with alliums about 4 years ago while visiting RHS Wisley. As a total rookie gardener then I thought these firework like flowers were out of my league but how wrong I was. As for growing on them on clay I discovered that a small amount of gravel in the bottom of an over large bulb hole (about the size you might dig for potatoes)seems to have done the trick for planting on our heavy clay. I now grow 4 varieties (well 6 if you count chives!) but my favorite by far has to be Allium hollandicum 'Purple Sensation'. It is big enough to be impressive but not too big to be overbearing, give them a whirl.
these are on my wishlist for my garden and it's reassuring to know that, with a little preparation, they should do ok my clay soil.
Alliums give wonderful height but do have tatty foliage which is best concealed Mine happily grow through hardy geraniums.
Leave some of your leeks to flower and you get huge purple heads that dry beautifully. Allium tuberosum is a good white one for the autumn and right now Allium neapolitanum is making a great show, also white but much smaller. One to beware of is Allium triquetrum which spreads like wildfire and has escaped into the hedgerows to the detriment of our native flora. But I agree it is a wonderful family to eat and to look at.


Alliums great but am never sure when to plant them early spring or autumn and hope the slugs dont eat the bulb
I have a small paved front garden,with Aliums in pots placed around it, I'd like to know,is what's best for them once the flowers have faded,do I leave them in the pots,put the pots in the back garden,let them die down,& put them back out next year,if so will I be able to get seeds scattered from them around the back garden,or do I need to take them out of the pots.Any answers would be much appreciated
I grow Allium Christophii in a pot and Allium Ostrowskianum (Pink) and Luteum (Yellow) in a gravel bed, planted in 2006 and and they still come up...
Can any of the aliums be planted in a shady little corner? I have a tiny little bed by my railings and i adore aliums. Any chanve of getting them to grow there??? Or any other suggestions?
I love alliums, I have saved the seeds from last year and now don't know what to do I would like to know how to propergate them.?
Thanks Graham,...I'll keep them in the pots for next year (I didn't really want to take them out!!.)
Whilst I thoroughly enjoy looking at other "designer" gardens..... My own un-professional,organic "heavenly retreat" is the desire of my heart. My ordinary purple foxgloves, my slightly over-exuberant welch poppies and my beautiful naturalized aquilegia are my idea of heaven .... Don't be disheartened! Chelsea is nice for ideas and introductions but for REAL gardens ... look at your own garden of eden !
I bought some allium plants from garden centre 2years ago, they have done brillaintly and have spread this yr , I have heavy (and I mean heavy) clay with peat soil (forrestry area), they are in full sun in the afternoon but think theyd do ok in shadey ish area too. I have a huge clump of chives nearby (mini alliums as you see them together). Give them a go .
I don't understand this magazine advercating cutting daff leaves down , in last week's gardening program on b.b.c. 2 we were told never to cut down the leaves. I was taught this over sixty years ago!


I agree that alliums are wonderful and very easy. However, keep footballs away from I lost a few from a few kicks courtesy of my son!
I have grown purple aliums this year and they have been beautiful.What do I do with the seed heads.Can i Propogate them?
"What do I do with the seed heads.Can i Propogate them?" I found that they seem to self seed very well. Too well, perhaps, as I had to treat most of the seedlings as weeds in the limited space that is our garden.