Plant of the Month for October 2019

Allium cyaneum
Allium cyaneum

Description and General Information:

This dwarf Allium is native to alpine slopes and subalpine forest margins of the Chinese Himalayas at an elevation of 2100-5000 m.  Very narrow, grass-like leaves arise from small bulbs.  Leaves are typically around 15 cm long.  The flowers are held atop 10-30 cm stems and bloom from August to October in its native region.  The nodding to outward-facing flowers are bell to star-like, powdery-blue to deep cobalt blue.  The stamens and style are exerted, a feature that will help distinguish it from the similar A. beesianum and A. sikkimense.

Cultivation:

This dwarf Allium is ideal for a trough or crevice garden but also suitable for the open rockery.  Provide full sun and a well drained but not droughty soil. It is not particular about the soil pH.

Bloom Period:

July to September

Propagation:

Mainly by seed; division of larger clumps.

Seed:

Sow seeds in pots and leave outside for the winter as seeds need a stratification period of 8-12 weeks.  Otherwise place in refrigerator for required stratification time.

Division:

Larger clumps may be dug and divided in early spring or early autumn.

Cuttings:

N/A

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