Your nose will definitely help you confirm that you have found wild onions, Allium canadense, AL-ee-um kan-uh-DEN-see. Also called Wild Garlic and Meadow Garlic by the USDA, walking through a patch raises a familiar aroma which brings me to a foraging maxim:
If a plant looks like an onion and smells like an onion you can eat it. If a plant looks like a garlic and smells like a garlic you can eat it. If you do not smell a garlic or an onion odor but you have the right look beware you might have a similar-looking toxic plant. For example, we have a native lily here in Florida that looks like an onion but has no aroma. It is toxic.
IDENTIFICATION: Allium canadense: Grass like basal leaves, small six-petaled flowers, odor of onion or garlic, stems round, older stems hollow. Underground bulbs look like small white onions. Ramps, however, have two or three broad, smooth, light green, onion-scented leaves. Also see another article on a European import, the dreaded Garlic Mustard.
Put chopped onions in 1/4 water and boil for five minutes. Add the rest of the liquid, cattail and Jerusalem artichoke. Cook at low temperature. Do NOT boil. When artichoke is almost done add flour and chia seeds. Mix. Salt and pepper to taste. Serves three.
I would like to know where I might purchase the seed or seedling for wild onions or wild garlic, would you have any idea how I might obtain this plant or weed? as some call it. Any info would be greatly appreciated.
I live in Chiefland. These wild garlic plants grow wild here. I deliver mail and I see them growing alongside the road. Somebody gave me some. So I planted them in my yard.I would think they would grow in Homosassa! Just start looking for them now. They are easy to find when they have the little bulblets on top.
Thanks. But I thought it is Allium canadense (onion) versus and Allium vineale (garlic). But I guess colloquially, anything goes. Are you saying that Allium canadense is commonly called wild onion, wild garlic, and onion grass? Can Allium canadense be hollow and chive-like, or is it always flat? What I have in my backyard is hollow and chive-like.
Wild Onions are like chives, they grow in clumps and are hard to distinguish from each other. Wild garlic on the other hand, is a single hollow stem, growing to 2ft with a round bulblet of seeds on top in early summer. Ramps are totally different though from the onion family but have 3 flat leaves , not hollow and are strongest scent. All can be used the same ways. SO, anything in a clump is wild onion or chives, single is garlic and 3 flat stems, Ramp. Hope this clears it all up.
Liz, my wild garlic grows in clumps, and if left to grow, develops quite nice bulbs. I usually pull/ dig a lot of it and steam it with my asparagus. I have canned it too. Also, dried the leaves of the older ones and then ground it up to season my garlic bread and veggies. To develop nice bulbs, I do have to thin it to give it room. Otherwise I get small bulbs in the fall when I dig. I am out side Erie, PA
In our lawn the chive type grow wild each Spring. They get mowed off and the smell is great.Might they be transplanted into the garden for use in cooking? Will they transplant well or do they then need certain care to survive.
Today on one of the cooking shows they garnished the baked chicken with wild garlic flowers. We know it is a weed, but they talked about it like it was some rare flower. You are giving us a good education.
I love finding this website. I have always loved foraging and learning about plants. I did not know that there ever was a site like this. THANK YOU for what you are doing.Do you know if Ramps grow in Arkansas? I would love to find some. I do have wild onion, garlic and garlic chives. I am also interested in all recipes on wild edibles.I live in southwest Arkansas, near the Oklahoma border.
Basically, anything with FLAT leaves is wild ramp or wild leak which are basically the same. Hollow leaves is always onion or garlic chives or grass. TALL hollow leaves are a single wild garlic plant with pink or purple flowers on top in late spring, bulb is on the bottom and should be dug up after flowering. U can transplant all of these. Keep well watered in Spring.
I live in northeast Oklahoma. Around here a wild onion has flat blades that look more or less like grass. Wild garlic has round spiky leaves. They often grow in much the same kind of places, although not really mixing. We consider them very different plants. If you confuse the two and bring wild garlic to a wild onion and egg breakfast the Cherokee ladies will have your head and throw you and your garlic out! It is really easy to tell them apart even from a distance due to the erect stance of the garlic. The difference is greater later in the season when they are too rank to gather anyway.
Dug a few of these up wild to transplant to home. Any tips to assure the grow and spread? Where do you split bulb apart to grow more like regular garlic. The few I picked have all had the bulbs chewed off the top.Thanks much-Ryan
I have what I hope are wild onions in my yard. The leaf part is like a curled tube and seems hollow. I have noticed an onions smell in previous seasons but it has been very wet the past coupe of days so I am not getting any smell. I saw that the lack of odor is a sign that it may be a toxic look a-like but that the look-a-likes are very bitter. I chewed on of the very small bulbs and tasted hardly any flavor. They just tasted earthy and watery.The smell is sort of sweet like fresh mown grass. I am located in central oklahoma.
in s.e. ok., lots of wild onions. a friend of mine sells them by the gallon bag. the plant has a very distinctive dark green color and a broken blade has a very onion smell. the season is pretty much over here, the wild onions have gone to seed. before that, the stems get tough. the young onions are tender and are delicious with eggs.
I have quite some of these plants growing in my little garden covered in mulch, at my condo, they remind me of what a chive plant would look like if I snipped the leaves, they definitely smell like onion. Would these be little chive plants?
Hi Sarah and Susan! I would adore if you were able to ship me some wild chives and wild garlic! We have very limited income and I have been foraging whatever I can for vegetables to eat!!! I appreciate if you could email me and I can give you my address!!!Thank you, Annie
About 15 years ago, I developed an intolerance of alliums, which has been annoying and inconvenient. I cope by taking a few Beano tablets, moderating my intake, and skipping a couple or more days between indulging. This allium species causes me the least distress, especially when thoroughly cooked, as in onion soup. Garlic, A. sativum, especially raw, is the worst offender.
Everyone shows pictures of wild onion and garlic already harvested and pulled up by the roots or growing with a stand of other plants. I need to know what they look like growing! And how to distinguish from their poison lily cousin!
A great many species of wild onion have a rosy blush to the base of their stems. But not all. Your nose is your best tool when trying to figure out if that grassy shoot you are looking at is an onion. Anything that looks like an onion that also smells like an onion is an onion. Lots of bulbs, some of them poisonous, can look like an onion, but none will also smell like one, too.
This actually can help the onion patch because those bulblets stay small and dormant while the large onion is in place. Removing it opens up space for the rest of the onions to grow; this is true for any bulb or corm plant, like camas.
Finally, if you are going after bulbs, you will want to wait until the foliage is dying down and the flowers have set seed. All onion flowers are similar: Loose balls of smaller flowers that smell like onions, usually pink or white. This is a cluster from a dusky wild onion:
When you get home, clean the onions in a basin of cool water by gently rubbing them down to remove old, dry skin. Once cleaned, wrap in a damp paper towel and put them in a covered container or plastic bag in the refrigerator. Stored this way, the onions will keep for about a week to 10 days before they deteriorate.
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What happens if you pick onions while the flowers are still pink? I was up in the mountains in central Nevada and was thrilled to see so many, so I grabbed several, but the flowers are all still pink. Did I waste my efforts? Are they edible? Thanks!
Can wild onions be planted in a pot indoors? Since it is getting difficult to find good places to forage for just about anything in this area of WI, I thought about trying to plant what I can indoors and enjoy it.
I am looking for the little wild onion that produces a myriad of little white bell shaped flowers, much like snowdrops, but smaller size plants. Is there a particular name for this species? From my childhood, they were found in mostly shaded areas on our way to school! Thanks much,
Take a good quality, artisanal apple cider vinegar (like what you can easily make at home), and infuse wild onions, ramps, or garlic in it for at least a couple of weeks, preferably longer. Both the alliums and the vinegar will be AMAZING!
Im glad i read your post, i think i found some wild green onions in a vacant lot next door ,they were coming up under my fence ,i thought they were weeds ,when i started pulling them out i got the strong smell of onions,they have small bulbs on them ,some are tiny,but smell strong,can i cook theses?
My onions started a long shoot (3 Feet tall) with a round flower looking thing on top. When I pulled it up, it definitel, smelled oniony but looked more garliclike with separate cloves. Is this edible onion or did I wait too long to pick it? 041b061a72