Herb: Alpine Leek


Latin name: Allium victorialis


Family: Alliaceae (Onion Family)



Medicinal use of Alpine Leek:

The root is antiscorbutic, carminative, diuretic and vermifuge. Used in the treatment of profuse menstruation.

Description of the plant:



Plant:
Bulb


Height:
60 cm
(2 feet)

Flovering:
May

Habitat of the herb:

Rocky and stony places in mountains, usually on calcareous soils.

Edible parts of Alpine Leek:

Bulb - raw or cooked. An onion substitute. The plants are as pungent as garlic. The bulbs are rather small, about 10 - 20mm in diameter, and are produced in clusters on a short rhizome. Leaves - raw or cooked. The stems and leaves are eaten, they are much favoured in Japan. Flowers - raw or cooked.

Other uses of the herb:

The juice of the plant is used as a moth repellent. The whole plant is said to repel insects and moles.

Propagation of Alpine Leek:

Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe in a greenhouse or cold frame. It germinates quickly and can be grown on in the greenhouse for the first year, planting out the dormant bulbs in the late summer of the following year if they have developed sufficiently, otherwise grow on in pots for a further year. Stored seed can be sown in spring in a greenhouse. Division in summer after the plants have died down. Fairly easy, though we have found that it is best to pot up the divisions until they are growing away strongly before planting them out into their permanent positions.

Cultivation of the herb:

Rocky and stony places in mountains, usually on calcareous soils.

Known hazards of Allium victorialis:

Although no individual reports regarding this species have been seen, there have been cases of poisoning caused by the consumption, in very 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.