Herb: Hooker's Onion


Latin name: Allium acuminatum


Family: Alliaceae (Onion Family)



Medicinal use of Hooker's Onion:

Although no specific mention of medicinal uses has been seen for this species, members of this genus are in general very healthy additions to the diet. They contain sulphur compounds (which give them their onion flavour) and when added to the diet on a regular basis they help reduce blood cholesterol levels, act as a tonic to the digestive system and also tonify the circulatory system.

Description of the plant:



Plant:
Bulb


Height:
30 cm
(11 3/4 inch)

Flovering:
May to
June

Habitat of the herb:

Amongst dry sunny rocks on hills and plains.

Edible parts of Hooker's Onion:

Bulb - raw or cooked. Eaten in spring and early summer. A strong flavour. The bulb is 10 - 15mm wide. Leaves - raw or cooked. Used as a relish. Flowers - raw. Used as a garnish on salads. The seed heads can be placed in hot ashes for a few minutes, then the seeds extracted and eaten.

Other uses of the herb:

The growing plant is said to repel insects and moles. The bulbs can be rubbed on the skin to repel insects.

Propagation of Hooker's Onion:

Seed - sow spring in a cold frame. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle - if you want to produce clumps more quickly then put three plants in each pot. Grow them on in the greenhouse for at least their first winter and plant them out into their permanent positions in spring once they are growing vigorously and are large enough. Division in spring. Very easy, the plants divide successfully at any time in the growing season and the divisions can be planted straight out into their permanent positions if required.

Cultivation of the herb:

Amongst dry sunny rocks on hills and plains.

Known hazards of Allium acuminatum:

Although no individual reports regarding this species have been seen, there have been cases of poisoning caused by the consumption, in large quantities and by some mammals, of certain members of this genus. Dogs seem to be particularly susceptible.

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.