Allium schoenoprasum, which is commonly known as Chives, is the smallest species of the edible onions.
Overview of Allium Schoenoprasum or Chives
• This is a herbaceous perennial plant.
• It is a native to Europe, Asia and North America.
• The name of the species comes from the Greek word skhoínos (sedge) and práson (leek).
• The English name, chives, comes from the French word cive and from lating word cepa, which means onion.
• They are used as an herb.
• They are grown in home gardens.
It is used in:
– Other dishes
• This herb has insect-repelling properties.
• It can be grown in gardens for the pest control.
• Chives are bulb-forming.
• Chives can grow up to a height of 30–50 cm.
• Its bulbs are slender and conical.
• The bulbs are 2–3 cm long and 1 cm broad.
• They grow in dense clusters from the roots.
• The stems are hollow and tubular.
• The stems are up to 50 cm long, and 2–3 mm in diameter.
• The flowers are pale purple.
• The flowers are star-shaped.
• The petals are 6 in number and about 1–2 cm wide.
• The seeds are produced in a small three-valve capsule.
• The seeds mature in summer.
• The herb flowers from April to May.
• Chives are grown for their leaves.
• It is used as a flavoring herb.
• This plant has medicinal properties.
• Chives are known to have a beneficial effect on the circulatory system.
It is a:
Growing conditions for Allium Schoenoprasum or Chives
• Start from seeds.
• Start indoors.
• Plant them about six weeks later in outdoors.
• Plant them in winter.
• Seeds can be sown outside directly too.
• Even seedlings directly can be brought and planted.
• Plant 5 bulbs each in that case.
• Each bulb has to be 10 cm spaced.
• The plant can grow up to 8″ to 12″ across.
• Sun and water has to be provided each day in the early stages.
• Chives prefer full sun.
• They can also be grown in partial shade.
• Minimal watering is sufficient.
• Fertilization is not required for this plant.
• Cut at about 3 cm from the ground.
• Once pom-pom shaped flowers appear at the ends, they can be cut back again.
• Onion chives have purple flowers.
• White flowers sprout from garlic chives.
• The seeds of this plant germinate in about 15 to 21 days.
• Make the site weed free.
Caring conditions for Allium Schoenoprasum or Chives
• The site should receive full sun to partial shade.
• Fertilize moderately.
• Apply a balanced fertilizer once or twice a season.
• This is to be applied before mid-August.
• Do not dry out the chive plants.
• Water the plant once a week when it is very sunny.
• Check for thrips in the chives plant.
• Thrips affect the plant and wilt the leaves.
• Look for pale yellow to light-green spots on its leaves.
• This is downy mildew.
• Pluck the affected leaves.
• Reduce the humidity and increase the air circulation near the chives, if growing indoors.