5 Allium Bulbs To Plant This Fall

If you’re debating on bulbs for the fall, go with alliums. Tall, showy, and blooming when spring flowers are fading and summer perennials are barely blossoming, alliums meet all of our garden needs. Deer resistant, rabbit resistant, squirrel resistant, vole resistant? Check. Pollinator? Check. Easy to grow? Check. Cut flower, dried flowers? Check. Perennial? Check. Unable to resist? Check.

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Allium’s foliage is low making it is easy to hide behind other perennials (baptisia, amsonia, peonies), after blooming. This showy, transitional flower has many cultivars (bulbs and herbaceous). Below are five bulbs that are reliable and bloom for weeks. Cut them and dry them or leave them on the flower stalks for interest in the garden long after blooming. The larger allium bulbs (‘Gladiator’) are planted 6” deep, the smaller (‘Drumstick’) are planted 3-4” deep. Plant as instructed on product bag.

gladiator allium

Allium ‘Gladitor’ (Flowering Onion)

Zone: 4-9

Bloom Size: 7-8” across

Height: 3-4’ tall

Plant: 6” deep

Space: 6-8” apart

Sun/Shade: Full sun

Bloom Time: May-June

Placement: Place behind peonies or other big-leaf spring blooming perennials to hide foliage after flowers are spent.

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Allium ‘Mt. Everest’ (Flowering Onion)

Zone: 4-9

Bloom Size: 7” across

Height: 3-4”

Plant: 6” deep

Space: 6-8” apart

Sun/Shade: Full sun

Bloom Time: May-June

Placement: Plant with ‘Walker’s Low’ catmint, or ‘Globemaster’ allium

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Allium ‘Globemaster’ (Giant Allium)

Zone: 4-9

Bloom size: 10” across

Height: 3-4’

Plant: 6” deep

Space: 8” apart

Sun/Shade: Full sun

Bloom Time: May-June

Placement: Plant with bearded iris, Siberian iris, peonies and other allium

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Allium schubertii (Tumbleweed Onion)

Zone: 5-8

Bloom size: 9-12” each floret stem varies in length of 1/2” to 8” giving it a fireworks look

Height: 12”

Plant: 6” deep

Space: 6-8” apart

Sun/Shade: Full sun

Bloom Time: May-June

Placement: Plant with Mexican feather grass or other ornamental grasses that the flowers can stand above and provide interest.

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Allium siculum, or Nectaroscordum siculum (Sicilian Honey Lily)

Zone: 5-10

Bloom Size: 3-4” across

Height: 3-4’

Plant: 6” deep

Space: 5-8” apart

Sun/Shade: Full sun

Bloom Time: May-June

Placement: Plant with baptisia, amsonia, or bearded iris.

Written by Cinthia Milner, garden coach and blog writer.

B.B.Barns serves all of Western North Carolina, upstate South Carolina and Tennessee.