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Allium cristophii

Previously known as:

  • Allium albopilosum
Phonetic Spelling
AL-ee-um kris-TOFF-ee-eye
This plant has low severity poison characteristics.
See below
Description

Star of Persia is a bulb from central Asia that grows 1-2 feet tall and has the largest flower cluster of all the ornamental onions. It tolerates summer drought but requires moisture during the growing season. In late spring clusters of silvery lavender flowers appear and make great cut or dried flowers. Leaving the dried flower heads on provide late-season interest. The flat strap-like leaves die back before flowering begins. Received the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit.

Plant the bulbs 12 inches apart and 5 inches deep in fall for spring blooms in well-drained soils in full sun to partial shade. Use in the border, a rock garden, cottage garden or in naturalized areas. 

VIDEO Created by Elisabeth Meyer for "Edibles, Bulbs, and Houseplants" a plant identification course offered in partnership with Longwood Gardens.   

More information on Allium.

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Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#sun#bulb#poisonous#full sun#drought tolerant#perennial bulb#cut flowers#dried flowers#bedding plant#plant in fall#Tunicated bulb#groundcover#rock gardens#spring interest#spring flowering bulbs#large blooms
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#sun#bulb#poisonous#full sun#drought tolerant#perennial bulb#cut flowers#dried flowers#bedding plant#plant in fall#Tunicated bulb#groundcover#rock gardens#spring interest#spring flowering bulbs#large blooms
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Allium
    Species:
    cristophii
    Family:
    Alliaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Bulb
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Division
    Seed
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Iran, Turkey and central Asia
    Wildlife Value:
    Attracts pollinators and songbirds.
    Particularly Resistant To (Insects/Diseases/Other Problems):
    normally not susceptible to animals, drought
    Edibility:
    Bulbs and stems are edible raw or cooked. However, the plant also has poisonous characteristics as noted in the "Poisonous to Humans" section of this record. Toxicity can depend on the age of the person or animal, the age of the plant, the part of the plant ingested, how much is ingested, whether the person or animal has sensitivities or allergies, whether it's eaten raw or cooked, and so forth. Consult with a medical professional for further details.
    Dimensions:
    Height: 0 ft. 6 in. - 2 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 1 ft. 0 in. - 2 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Bulb
    Poisonous
    Growth Rate:
    Medium
    Maintenance:
    Low
    Texture:
    Medium
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Available Space To Plant:
    Less than 12 inches
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    4a, 4b, 5b, 5a, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8b, 8a
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Black
    Brown/Copper
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Fall
    Summer
    Fruit Type:
    Capsule
    Fruit Description:
    Capsule with black seeds
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Gray/Silver
    Purple/Lavender
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Umbel
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Good Cut
    Good Dried
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Summer
    Flower Shape:
    Star
    Flower Petals:
    6 petals/rays
    Flower Description:
    Large cluster is 8-12 inches wide with many pale lavender flowers at the top of a naked stem in late spring to early summer.
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Fragrant
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Rosulate
    Leaf Shape:
    Linear
    Leaf Margin:
    Entire
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    > 6 inches
    Leaf Width:
    < 1 inch
    Leaf Description:
    Flat strap-like leaves are up to 20 inches long and 1 inch wide in a basal rosette. Leaves begin to wither before bloom time. Have an onion or garlic smell when bruised.
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Green
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    Yes
    Stem Cross Section:
    Round
    Stem Form:
    Straight
    Stem Surface:
    Smooth (glabrous)
    Stem Description:
    Smooth green leafless stems
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Container
    Meadow
    Naturalized Area
    Landscape Theme:
    Cottage Garden
    Rock Garden
    Design Feature:
    Border
    Small groups
    Attracts:
    Pollinators
    Songbirds
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Deer
    Drought
    Rabbits
    Problems:
    Poisonous to Humans
    Problem for Cats
    Problem for Dogs
  • Poisonous to Humans:
    Poison Severity:
    Low
    Poison Symptoms:
    Symptoms may include: nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. (Poison parts: All parts; bulbs, bulblets, flowers, and stems)
    Poison Toxic Principle:
    Sulfides
    Causes Contact Dermatitis:
    No
    Poison Part:
    Flowers
    Fruits
    Leaves
    Roots
    Seeds
    Stems