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Alliums – Calling All Bees and Butterflies!

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The Giant Allium is one of my favorite plants. Dramatic flower stalks rise up to five feet high (1.5 m.), with a sphere of brilliant purple, blue or white flowers crowning the top. Beau Regard, Persian Blue  and Graceful come to mind. For pure novelty, I choose Hair Allium—its whimsical blooms have reddish-purple hearts and greenish-yellow, hairlike flowers that add an interesting texture to the late spring garden.

The Giant Alliums are like shining beacons for bees and butterflies, and we know how essential these pollinators are to a successful garden. Providing a welcome for them would be reason enough to plant Alliums, but there are so many more!

With over 750 species, there are plants ranging in height from just two inches (5 cm) to over five feet (1.5 m). Using different varieties, I could fill all my borders, perennial beds and containers with a rainbow of color from early spring through late summer. Many Alliums make great cut flowers, too.

Best of all, you can pretty much plant them and forget them — my ideal plant is one that’s not needy. Alliums aren’t fussy about soil, as long as there is adequate drainage. They thrive in full sunlight, but many species perform well in a shady woodland setting. They multiply easily in the garden, yet not so fast that they take over, so they can remain in the same space for years.

The Allium family includes edibles like onions, garlic, shallots and leeks, so most species have a scent that will repel deer, rodents and other garden pests. And at the same time, Alliums are attracting bees and butterflies for better garden pollination.

If I could grow only one type of plant in my garden, it would have to be Allium. Thankfully, we don’t have to choose just one. See the whole selection of Alliums in your Breck’s catalog or on our website!

 

 

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Mary Pat has written 23 post in this blog.

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July 15, 2015
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