Sunday, July 12, 2015

Chive and other Allium species Seeds. 7.12.15

Chives Seed Heads.  7.12.15

Removing Chives Seeds from Seed Head.  7.12.15
 This week I have been collecting seed heads from alliums.  Bees of multiple types forage many types of alliums.  They bloom at different times, allowing for a long nectar flow.

Kitchen chives (Allium schoenoprasum) have a long bloom period and are very pretty.  Bees forage them continuously when blooming.  They are perennial and easy to grow.  The seed heads and stems have dried out and become brown, so they ready for seed harvest.

Allium karataviense "Ivory Queen" was a new addition last fall.  Of the several bulbs in the backet, only one grew and bloomed.  They are interesting and pretty, and later blooming than most spring bulbs.  It would be nice to have some more, but I don't want to buy them.

I also have a number of specimens of Allium aflatunense 'Purple Sensation' that are at the stage of dried seed heads, ready to harvest seeds.

The seed heads would be nice for dried flower arrangements, too.

The process of collecting seeds is almost too simple for words.  Just cut off the seed heads, collect them in a bowl, and shake them upside down in another bowl.  Most of the seeds will just fall out.  Rubbing the seed heads a little between the fingers will remove more.

I collected them into labeled envelopes, but have left them unsealed.  They are quite dry, due to 2 weeks in the 90s with no rain.

There are several options for planting them.  The easiest would be, plant in flowerpots or flats and leave them in a sheltered place for the winter.

I need to look them up.  Some may need stratifying or aging.  If it looks promising, I will plant them soon, to get a head start.  It may take a couple of years for flowering alliums to bloom.  Chives should bloom next year.
Seed Heads of Allium aflatunense. 7.12.15
Chives and Allium karataviense  Seeds.   7.12.15


  1. I've tons of saved seeds. Labeling them is another matter. Carrots, onions, chives, beans, lettuce and broccoli seeds are the tops.

  2. You have saved more than I have. I am pretty good about labeling. I put them in envelope and write description on label. Last year I saved Chinese chive, Four O'clock, and other years many types, pumpkins, squash, tomatoes, beans.