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Noon Edition

Planning Ahead for Summer Alliums

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I love the alliums that bloom for a long period in our spring and early summer gardens. But I saw one in a friend’s garden last year that blooms in July, persisting well into August.

Alliums belong to the onion family but are ornamental and do not have the characteristic pungent odor of culinary onions. There is only a faint onion smell if you actually crush the leaves, and this is easy to avoid.

The variety that blooms in July and August in Zones 5-8 is ‘Millennium’. It forms a tidy clump and is only 12-18” tall and 12-18” wide and it is sterile, so won’t self-seed and hop about. It produces small round rosy-purple flowers that attract pollinators to the garden. The flower globes last a long time on the plant. No wonder this little gem was the perennial plant of the year in 2018.

Alliums are easily grown in a wide range of soils, tolerate drought, and are not eaten by deer or rabbits. Plants can be purchased in the spring and planted when all danger of frost is passed. If you can’t find it locally, look online.

It is hard to find perennials that reliably bloom in the heat of summer.

This is Moya Andrews, and today we focused on planning ahead.

Allum, purple blossoms

Allium's summer blooms. (dretzlaff, needpix.com)

I love the alliums that bloom for a long period in our spring and early summer gardens. But I saw one in a friend’s garden last year that blooms in July, persisting well into August.

Alliums belong to the onion family but are ornamental and do not have the characteristic pungent odor of culinary onions. There is only a faint onion smell if you actually crush the leaves, and this is easy to avoid.

The variety that blooms in July and August in Zones 5-8 is ‘Millennium’. It forms a tidy clump and is only 12-18” tall and 12-18” wide and it is sterile, so won’t self-seed and hop about. It produces small round rosy-purple flowers that attract pollinators to the garden. The flower globes last a long time on the plant. No wonder this little gem was the perennial plant of the year in 2018.

Alliums are easily grown in a wide range of soils, tolerate drought, and are not eaten by deer or rabbits. Plants can be purchased in the spring and planted when all danger of frost is passed. If you can’t find it locally, look online.

It is hard to find perennials that reliably bloom in the heat of summer.

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