Georgia Gardener Newsletter Cool Plant: June 25, 2009
Species Native Range: Europe & Asia
Hardiness: USDA Zones 5-10
Mature Size: 2-3 feet tall & 2 feet wide
Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Loose, well-drained
Drought Tolerance: Excellent
Ease of Culture: Easy
Oddly beautiful, the ornamental onion with its ball of flowers is a great plant to add to the late spring/early summer
garden. As with edible onions, they are grown from bulbs and if crushed an onion aroma. Wide, strap-like foliage
add texture throughout the season. Flower colors range widely from blue/lavender to pink to white and even yellow.
Plant ornamental onion in full sun in loose, rich, organic soil that is well-drained. Poorly drained soil may
lead to rotten bulbs. Plants can be dug and divided every few years. Cut back the flower stalks after bloom
to maintain a tidy appearance.
Grow ornamental onions in a perennial border, herb garden or mixed with shrubs and annuals.
Companion plants include catmint, lavender, sage, daylilies, roses, lantana, etc.
Suggestion: Having grown up in California, I've always been in love with Lily-of-the-Nile (Agapanthus) but I have
been unsuccessful in growing these plants in Georgia. I now use ornamental onion as a substitute.
Ornamental onion can be found at many retail nurseries and on the web for mail order.
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