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Botanical Name: Allium neapolitanum
Species: A. neapolitanum
*Allium album Santi
*Allium amblyopetalum Link
*Allium candidissimum Cav.
*Allium candidum C.Presl
*Allium cowanii Lindl.
Common Names: Neapolitan Garlic, Naples Garlic, Daffodil Garlic, False Garlic, Flowering Onion, Naples Onion, Guernsey Star-of-Bethlehem, Star, White Garlic, Wood Garlic.
Habitat : Allium neapolitanum is native to Europe – Mediterranean area in Europe, Africa and W. Asia.It is naturalized in other areas, including Pakistan, Australia, New Zealand, and in southern and western parts of the United States. It is classed as an invasive species in parts of the U.S., and is found primarily in the U.S. states of California, Texas, Louisiana, and Florida. It grows on dry grassy places and fields.
Allium neapolitanum is a BULB growing to 0.3 m (1ft) by 0.1 m (0ft 4in). Plant is a perennial type. The leaves which are not very attractive which also wither back qoickly after flowering. It is not frost tender. It is in leaf 7-Oct It is in flower from Mar to May, and the seeds ripen from May to June.
The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees, insects.Suitable for: light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers dry or moist soil.
An easily grown plant, it prefers a sheltered sunny position in a light well-drained soil. Established plants are reasonably drought tolerant. Plants are said to be rather frost tender. They probably tolerate temperatures down to between -5 and -10°c and can only be grown outdoors in the milder areas of the country. The dormant bulbs are fairly hardy and will withstand soil temperatures down to at least -5°c. The bulbs should be planted fairly deeply. Most members of this genus are intolerant of competition from other growing plants. A very ornamental plant, it is sometimes grown as a decorative indoor plant. There is at least one named variety, ‘Grandiflorum’ has a richer display of flowers than the type. In sunny weather the flowers develop a sweet scent. Plants come into new growth in late autumn and provide edible leaves throughout most winters. When well-sited, plants can sometimes self-sow to the point of nuisance. Grows well with most plants, especially roses, carrots, beet and chamomile, but it inhibits the growth of legumes. This plant is a bad companion for alfalfa, each species negatively affecting the other. Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer.
Seed – sow spring in a greenhouse. The seed can also be sown in a cold frame as soon as it is ripe in early summer. 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 on for the first winter in a greenhouse and plant out in late summer whilst the bulbs are dormant. Division in summer once the plant has died down. Very easy, the bulbs divide freely and can be planted straight out into their permanent positions if required.
Leaves – raw or cooked. Delicious in salads, they start off being sweet and then develop a fairly strong garlic-like flavour, they are liked by most people who try them. The leaves are available from late autumn until early spring and are greatly appreciated at this time of year. Bulb – raw or cooked. Rather small but a very nice mild garlic flavour. Sliced up, they make a delicious addition to salads and can also be used as a vegetable or as a flavouring in cooked foods. They are harvested in mid summer once the plant dies down and will store for 6 months or more. The bulbs are 10 – 20mm in diameter. Flowers – raw or cooked. Excellent in salads, making them look attractive as well as adding a strong onion flavour.
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.
The juice of the plant is used as a moth repellent. The whole plant is said to repel insects and moles
Known Hazards : 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[
Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.