Mauve flowers of Allium hollandicum 'Purple Sensation'

10 great alliums to grow

Discover 10 beautiful alliums to grow, lighting up late-spring borders.

Alliums (ornamental alliums) are incredibly long-lived and bloom for weeks on end, bridging the gap between spring and summer.


Find out everything you need to know about growing alliums in our allium Grow Guide.

The pompon flowers make a dramatic statement when planted en masse – plant generous amounts of the bulbs in autumn – they should come back year after year. The flowers are excellent for cutting and bees love them; they also look good dried.

Discover more plants with pompon flowers.

Here are 10 gorgeous alliums to grow in your garden.

Alliums are incredibly long-lived and bloom for weeks on end, bridging the gap between spring and summer.


Allium forrestii

Allium forrestii is a rare dwarf species of allium, native to meadows and gravelly slopes of China. It has grassy foliage and delicate claret coloured flowers.

Height: 20-25 cm.

Delicate claret-coloured flowers of <em>Allium forrestii</em>
Delicate claret-coloured flowers of Allium forrestii

Allium ‘Mars’

Allium ‘Mars’ bears well-formed, dark-red-puple, compact flower heads in late-spring and early summer. It’s is a fantastic choice for sunny borders, and works well when planted in drifts with ornamental grasses and other alliums.

Height: 110cm.

Purple rotund flowerheads of <em>Allium</em> 'Mars'
Purple rotund flowerheads of Allium ‘Mars’

Allium ‘Purple Sensation’

The tall flowers of Allium ‘Purple Sensation’ appear in summer, showing off rounded heads full of deep violet flowers. It’s best to remove the immature seed-heads as the seedlings tend to have paler flowers.

Height: 80cm.

Mauve flowers of <em>Allium hollandicum</em> 'Purple Sensation'
Mauve flowers of Allium hollandicum ‘Purple Sensation’

Allium ‘Dready’

Allium ‘Dready’ is a cultivar of Allium vineale, as is related cultivar ‘Hair’. ‘Dready’ refers to the masses of dreadlock-like curling tendrils in green-red, which grow out from mauve drumstick flower heads.

Height: 40cm.

Curling green tendrils of <em>Allium</em> 'Dready'
Curling green tendrils of Allium ‘Dready’

Allium falcifolium

Native to California and southern Oregon, Allium falcifolium is a relatively rare, low-growing alpine allium, bearing deep pink-purple shaggy flowers in late summer.

Height: 20cm.

Deep-pink flowers of <em>Allium falcifolium</em>
Deep-pink flowers of Allium falcifolium

Allium amphibolum

Allium amphibolum is a rarely seen drumstick allium hailing from Western China, having wiry stems and small, shaggy flower heads in light pink, with a sweet fragrance.

Height: 40cm.

Dusky-pink flowerheads of <em>Allium amphibolum</em>
Dusky-pink flowerheads of Allium amphibolum

Allium ‘Purple Caila’

Allium ‘Purple Caila’ bears large flower heads of purple, star-shaped florets on tall, bare stems in late spring to early summer.

Height: 20cm.

Purple, star-shaped florets of <em>Allium</em> 'Purple Caila
Purple, star-shaped florets of Allium ‘Purple Caila” flowerheads

Allium ‘Red Mohican’

Allium ‘Red Mohican’ is a striking allium, bearing unusual, maroon-red drumstick-style flower heads with extra tufts at the top, tipped with tiny white flowers (resembling a mohican).

Height: 90cm.

Maroon, mohican-like flowerheads of <em>Allium</em> 'Red Mohican'
Maroon, mohican-like flowerheads of Allium ‘Red Mohican’

Allium rosenbachianum ‘Album’

Allium rosenbachianum ‘Album’ bears globular, flower heads of star-shaped white florets with a green eye. As they mature, the green eyes become seed cases held on thin stalks, to striking effect.

Height: 80cm.

White and lime-green flowers heads of <em>Allium rosenbachianum</em> 'Album'
White and lime-green flowers heads of Allium rosenbachianum ‘Album’

Allium ‘Purple Rain’

Allium ‘Purple Rain’ is a cross between Allium ‘Purple Sensation’ and Allium Cristophii. It bears huge purple, globe-shaped flower heads measuring up to 15cm in diameter.


Height: 90cm.

Huge purple-pink flowerheads of <em>Allium</em> 'Purple Rain'
Huge purple-pink flowerheads of Allium ‘Purple Rain’