View Full Version : Allium Giganteum - grow4ing in December!

23-12-15, 11:10
I have a gardening problem.

I visited a flower show back in September and bought four giant bulbs the size of onions.

The bulbs were planted in early November to a depth of about 6 inches deep so the frost couldn't touch them.

The trouble being we haven't really had many cold nights or frost and the bulbs have been fooled into thinking it's spring or summer.

They've pushed out new growth to about 6 inches above the earth. They are bred to grow 4 or 5 feet tall.

What will happen when the cold weather does arrive - will this 'sprouting' cause problems later next year when they were due to grow.



30-12-15, 11:32
I don't know about that bulb in particular but usually they just go into a period of dormancy when it turns colder. Recent winters have been mild (early on especially) so lots of bulbs come up early but they tend to survive. I have lots of shoots coming up and currently have an iris in full flower and some daffs almost in bud.

31-12-15, 11:35
I wouldn't worry about it.

You could always try growing some backups from seed (about a fiver). You might well have paid over the odds at a flower show.

If there IS risk of a harsh frost a good layer of light fleece should give protection.

Also they are Frost Hardy, so unless the ground is soggy, or its very below zero they should just 'slow down'


13-01-16, 11:58
Frost will most likely kill the plant if left outside. It will only survive outside in a Greenhouse if there is heating.

If you want it to stay alive I would suggest getting one of those big plastic containers (60cm x 90cm) and filling it with half compost, half manure, rock dust and cover with short cut straw mulch. Then stick it on a table to your south facing window.

This is going to the extremes but I assure you all vegetable show gardeners do this. I've even known people to feed their plants concentrated fertilizer x10 powerful than compost tea.

13-01-16, 22:20
Thanks for all your advice. I think my problem now is that although I like garden foliage and flowers I can no longer service plants that are at ground level due to impairments.

aAI don't mind spending money on gardening stuff it's just too hazardous for me to dig and plant due to balance issues and a wonky left side.

The bulbs shoots look strong and healthy but we've had no frost to date. As it happens the temperature will dip to -1C tomorrow night - that's Thursday. The bulbs are situated in well drained crumbly soil and in a sunny area. They were planted with a sprinkling of plant feed to establish them. I just didn't expect any growth until about May!

I don't have a greenhouse or anything fancy to cover them - as has been said they are frost resistant but I don't think the fleshy stems and leaves can be expected to survive a prolonged cold spell.

I'll try to take a photo to show you before they wither!

15-04-16, 08:54
and how is your bulbs looking now!?

15-04-16, 09:52
and how is your bulbs looking now!?

I've had daffodils and snow drops that looked good. Several purple hyacinths foweredand are now on their way out.

Tulips have grown and are days away from flowering.

The six Allium bulbs all survived and have thrown out big fleshy long leaves. Each bulb has shown out leaves that cover an area about 12 inches square. The stalk and tennis ball sized flower have yet to arrive.

I've also got a giant magnolia shrub 12 feet tall that's full of white flowers.

Spring is a great time - I love the colours. My favourite Japanese Maple is just beginning to sprout those red leaves - given another month and it'll look magnificent.

I've also got a fuchsia that is showing signs of waking up. And I've got a few pots of Lupins on the kitchen window4 cill waiting to be planted in the next week or two.

How are your bulbs doing.

16-04-16, 12:21
So here's a few photos of plants in my garden at the moment.

Tulips, part of my front garden, Allium bulbs have sprouted - these are part pf the onion family - the bulbs are as big as a red onion!




16-04-16, 19:35
Looking good:) I think I have some Allium ginganticum seed somewhere.

So much to do, so much to grow. And frost tonight in places:)

16-04-16, 20:35
I have got seedlings in the greenhouse. Set them off late and haven't had to use the greenhouse heater until last night. On again tonight and will be on for the next few nights as very low temperatures are forecast. Planted my summer flowering bulbs a couple of weeks ago, hoping they come up and will put the bedding plants in between them all being well.
Planted some cucumber and pepper seeds and have some black opal tomato plants on order. Thought I would try them as we haven't had any home grown toms for the last 3 or 4 years. Hubby gave up on them after a couple of very poor crops.
In spite of being a complete novice I don't think I am doing too bad. Surprised me anything has actually come up as I am not known for having green fingers.

17-04-16, 22:00
A bit more colour in the garden




25-04-16, 17:14
We're now onto 25 April. Temperatures at night can still get down to just 2 or 3C.

The Allium have now produced a central stem with a potential single flower 'pod'


The tulip flowers are emerging as a dark purple!


25-04-16, 18:27
Temperature of 2 or 3 is warm to what we have had. White over most mornings and snow today. Greenhouse heater has been on for well over a week now.
My tulips are a deep purple too.

12-05-16, 19:30
It's been a hot sunny day here in Manchester but by Saturday morning we're back to low single figures!

The Allium flower stems are now about ,2 feet tall but yet to flower.
Other shrubs are beginning throw out buds too!

31-05-16, 20:43
Well, the tulips and Hyacinths are well past their prime and all petals have floated down and melted into the earth.

31 May 2016
The Allium flowers have burst into the warm Manchester sky and my newly acquired Lupin flowers are changing from green to red.

The beginning of June is hours away - what's sprouting near to you!

Here's how things are looking in my small border.



31-05-16, 20:57
I have loads of bedding plants in the greenhouse that I have cultivated myself. Just waiting for the daff, tulip and hyacinth leaves to die off so they can be removed before I start hardening the bedding plants off ready to plant in the border between the summer flowering bulbs that are just about showing their heads.
I have also got in the greenhouse a few tomato plants, cucumbers, sweet peppers and chilli peppers that all seem to be flourishing. Whether or not they will bear fruit remains to be seen.
I am really quite proud of myself as it is my first bash at proper gardening in all these years.

01-06-16, 07:47
I have "solved" (well a case of necessity) the problem of "cant bend or dig w.o. falling over" by using containers and raising the beds.
I try not to go mad buying plants cuz that just leads to "where to put em" and can i actually look after it? I have no outside tap, so all those containers need watering...I'll post some piccies when I've sorted the best!

01-06-16, 08:00
I also can't bend because of falling over. I have raised borders and lots of tall tubs. In the greenhouse everything is on tall racking leaving the bottom shelves empty. It is still a struggle but I manage. I have a narrow watering can that fits in my walker bag so I can transport it and use walls and fences to hold onto when using it. My one hanging basket has a lowering strap.
To water the borders I have one of those curly hoses that I can hold along with my frame handle, I then hold onto the border edges and use it with the other hand.
I also get tempted to buy extra plants and have the same problem as to where to plant them, prudence has to reign as I have lots of plugs in the greenhouse.

01-06-16, 08:03
Well my uploads are failing so y'all will have to wait for my tech whizzo to visit.

01-06-16, 09:26
Well my uploads are failing so y'all will have to wait for my tech whizzo to visit.

Hi Reddivine, regarding photos to display here on this thread.

First of all any photos you take on your mobile will be too large to upload.

If you have any photo manipulation software you need to ...

1 Resize the photo from say 2MB to 500K

2 Keep the resolution at 72dpi

3 I tend to change the dimensions from millimetres to inches in the re-size dialogue box then change the width to five inches - the depth will adjust automatically.

4 You can also use the crop tool9 9to cut away bit you don't want.

5 Uner 'filter' you might have a pull down that says 'sharpen' - inside that box may be an option called 'unsharp mask' that's the filter I use to 'crispen' the image.

6 Save the photo in a folder on your hard drive. NOTE If y8our software has an option called 'save for web' under the word 'file' at the top - so much the better. Your original photo is made of 1000s of colours but your computer can only show 72 colours on your monitor.

Now the photo is ready to import

7 Click on the third icon from the right which you can see about the new message box - the one shaped like a square coloured light green. Then choose the jpeg photo and insert it into your message.
The image appears below your text - double click on the imported image and tick the box that says 'large'

Once admin approve the photo your message with photos will appear!

It only sounds difficult but once you've followed the instructions a few times it gets easier.

If you need software try out Adobe Photoshop Elements - used by many keen photographers.

Good luck.

02-06-16, 09:56
Was with you till "photo manipulation software". Like I said, will wait for more experienced nerds than I.

02-06-16, 18:20
Was with you till "photo manipulation software". Like I said, will wait for more experienced nerds than I.If anyone wants a programme that will view images in most formats, resize (make the fie size smaller so it can be uploaded to forums), crop the image, add special effects, etc., etc. but does not want to spend a fortune on photoshop or similar.

Then could I suggest that you get this FREE image viewer / manipulator.

I and many others have been using it for years; it does most things that a home user would want to do (and much more).

Obviously it's not going to compete with the high end professional programmes, but for home use you don't need the features of those.

04-06-16, 07:50
158915901591 all it took, in the end was a skype chat with my son and "share screen" and him to talk me thru it....

04-06-16, 07:52
As I said some of my many containers and solutions to the "can't bend down safely" problem...(and the strawb have since ripened!!!)

04-06-16, 08:05
Bloomin' gorgeous!

I need help! My cone shaped Lupin flowers look great but the leaves look in a terrible state - wilting. Another younger Lupin has no flowers but the leaves are healthy - very odd!

I'm wondering if they are are a shade plant as where it's planted happens to be sunny for most of the day.

I think the Alliums have peaked! The flower heads are grapefruit size - very impressive!

I've now got poppies springing up.

04-06-16, 16:45
Not had a lot of experience with Lupins.. They do use them as 'green manure' as they enable nitrogen fixing.

Seems they also don't like soil too soggy and prefer it a bit acid..


05-06-16, 06:45
So basically lupins = good, even if they look wierd, cuz they fix nitrogen and poppies = good, NOT a weed , wildflower and bee/butterfly attractant.
Went to plant sale yesterday and son has helped me plant the 2 raspberry plants..

05-06-16, 13:22
Well the Lupin flowers certainly attract the bees which is good.

I keep thinking that the Allium flowers have peaked but they keep expanding!

This gives you an idea of the flower head size in comparison to a 50p coin I'm holding.


07-06-16, 11:39
Possibly why its called Allium giganteum, one of those lovely latin names that lives up to itself:)

07-06-16, 22:02
Here's a few facts about the plant . . .

Allium giganteum, common name giant onion, is an Asian (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asia) species of onion (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Onion), native to central and southwestern Asia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asia) but cultivated in many countries as a flowering garden plant.[4] (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allium_giganteum#cite_note-4)[5] (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allium_giganteum#cite_note-5) It is the tallest ornamental Allium in common cultivation, growing to 1.5 metres (4.9 ft).[6] (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allium_giganteum#cite_note-6)
In early to midsummer, small globes of intense purple umbels (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Umbels) appear, followed by attractive fruiting umbels. A popular cultivar (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cultivar), 'Globemaster', is shorter (80 centimetres (31 in)) but produces much bigger, deep violet, umbels (15–20 centimetres (5.9–7.9 in)). Both varieties have been granted the Royal Horticultural Society (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Royal_Horticultural_Society)'s Award of Garden Merit (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Award_of_Garden_Merit).[7] (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allium_giganteum#cite_note-7)[8] (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allium_giganteum#cite_note-8)[9] (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allium_giganteum#cite_note-9)
In nature, the species is found in Iran (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iran), Afghanistan (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Afghanistan), Turkey (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Turkey), Turkmenistan (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Turkmenistan), Tajikistan (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tajikistan), and Uzbekistan (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uzbekistan).[3] (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allium_giganteum#cite_note-natasha-3)


Well at least the thunderstorm and rain passing over will water the garden

08-07-16, 22:06
Well, we've had a few downpours but the sun tries its best.

In my small front garden I seem to have been growing poppies - lots of them and I didn't plant them. They just keep flowering every day.

I have another Lupin plant that is just flowering - great value as a tiny potted plant cat just £3 and as mushroomed out.

The other mature plant that's just beginning to flower s a tiny hydrangea - the flower heads will get bigger.

1609 1610

A few weeks ago this also popped up but not sure of its name.


I think gardens cheer you up. I've also got Begonias growing in pots at the back - looking a bit wild at the moment!

What's on the go in your garden, patio, balcony or pot! Let's see some photos!

10-07-16, 06:54
16121613 on the left a rather fetching salvia, the hangbaskets contain toms, strawbs, nasturtiums, trailing lobelias (all looking rather more than when I took this. Also in containers: peas (just been eating em), ooh and lots more I'll have to post more - when stops raingng

10-07-16, 06:56
LT the white flower is it a bush or flower? and are those leaves glossy or more matte?

08-08-16, 10:12

Roses in the back garden, they change colour from yellow to red:)

29-08-16, 17:53
Very nice TFK.

Yes in Manchester we have a beautiful blue sky, no rain or wind - just a blazing sun.

By this time of year my shrubs are at their best but having a fairly big garden on two sides plus a long patio area it's too big fr me to manage. These days I have to employ gardeners to cut the hedges, hoe the borders and cut the grass plus a bit of weeding. Then I pay another person to plant things up, trim back the shrubs . . .

Luckily I'm surrounded by trees which keeps my place fairly private. Now you and RD are welcome here for a free mini break in September as you both love gardening so I hear! I bet we could carry two Lightdrives and folded wheelchairs in my hatchback too!

A good friend of mine gave me some 'Micklemousse Daises' from her garden before moving out. They love my soil and sunny aspect so have thrived!


29-08-16, 18:16
Since having my garden landscaped and made accessible I have managed to grow all my own bedding plants and planted them in the raised border and pots.
I am lucky that my hubby mows the lawn, cuts the hedges and moves pots that I have planted in the greenhouse for me. He does nothing else, it is all down to me
Watering all the tubs and border takes me 3 hours plus as I can only use a small watering can that will fit in my walker and that I can lift with one arm when full whilst hanging on with the other arm, I do use the hose on the border though. Flaming hard work but I manage it.
I have also managed to grow some cucumbers and tomatoes in the greenhouse.
Surprisingly enough I managed to revive some shrubs that were going cheap and half dead.

I am a novice gardener, never having an accessible garden until last year. Still learning but I am very proud of the display I have this year, very colourful. Not really good by a professional's standard, I am learning by my mistakes. I will have a better idea of what bedding plants to grow for next year.

Next plan is to sow some winter flowering violas and pansy seeds to start them off ready to transplant into tubs and the border as the summer flowers fade.

24-09-16, 09:27
How is your bulbs looking now!? If possible for you, please give us phothos.

24-09-16, 10:11
Now Autumn has officially arrived I don't plant anything. I've had all my shrubs pruned and a few days ago I had my path and patio areas jet washed so there's no slippy areas under foot.

It's looking more likely that my provisional lodger may take the back room. She's painting my kitchen starting Monday and I'm paying her for services rendered. I reckon she might want to use payment towards the deposit for renting a room.

Isn't it funny how a lodger likes the use of a garden e.g. sun bathing and chilling but not lending a hand! That's one of the benefits of renting a room - no commitments!

10-10-16, 17:54



Buddlia, Cyclamens and Sedum are really doing well right now..

08-11-16, 17:08
Now is the time of year to plant your Allium bulbs for a fantastic display later in 2017. I'm just going to see if my 'original' bulbs sprout again next year!

28-11-16, 22:38
You do in effect have 'free Alliums' if you've let your alliums go to seed.. They may not be true, and may take a while to grow, but if you want a challenge:)

Not a lot to do apart from tidying up, and clearing out storage spaces/greenhouse. And dealing with the 'big pile of junk' at the back of my parents garden:)

15-01-17, 06:13
You do in effect have 'free Alliums' if you've let your alliums go to seed.. They may not be true, and may take a while to grow, but if you want a challenge :)

How right you are. Fifty per cent of the bulbs have begun to sprout shoots over the last few days. But it appears that each bulb is thowing up two stems which isn't ideal as the flower heads can grace several inches in diameter!

Do you think I should wait a few weeks then cut the smallest of the two shoots back to allow one to thrive.

Each stem is just an inch high at the moment but as thick as your thumb.

20-03-17, 14:48
The Allium have thrown up spickyg thick green leaves but as of now mnemonic stems.

I left last year's bulbs in (each was the size of a cricket ball). This year there are two new plants per bulb - it will be interesting if each plant throws up a pompon size flower in May!