- Allium is a beautiful garden-like vegetable plant of the monocotyledonous genus with hundreds of species including onion, garlic, etc.
- The generic name Allium is the Latin word for garlic. This plant has become an attractive sight in gardens and farming lands as its colour variations can relax eyes.
- Allium belongs to the Plantae kingdom with more than ten synonyms such as Cepa Mill, Saturnia Maratti etc. The synonyms are from different languages in the world.
- They are used as vegetables, garden plants and medicinal plants worldwide.
The Scientific Overview of Allium
- The Allium equally go along with garlic because they smell like pure garlic of this group.
- Various Alliums have been cultivated from the earliest times in different parts of the world before the scientific classification. The scientific classification of the genus is still running in the background.
- A dozen of species in the Allium genus are economically important as crops bringing income to countries. And some are garden vegetables supporting lives. Some of them are considered ornamental plants that deliver an eye-catching visual treatment.
- The classification of this genus was a difficult task for scientists as the species boundaries were unclear. More studies are to be done to estimate the total number of species in the genus Allium.
- The chemical compound from the plant is mostly derived from Cysteine Sulfoxides, giving the characteristics of onion or garlic taste and order. Thus, most plants are used as food plants though all the members aren’t equally flavourful.
- There is one more thing that lays off the characteristics of its flavour. The flavour changes depending on the sulfate content of the soil in which the plant takes root. In the rare occurrence of sulfur-free growth conditions, the plant may lose its usual pungency and all of the determined characteristics would go wrong.
The Cultivation of Allium as a Vegetable
Allium plants have a ground role in the daily diets of Asians.
The Ayurvedic treatments also raise the role of Allium plants like garlic, onion etc. For the Asians, they are a part of their ancestral food culture.
- Onion and garlic are economically the most important Allium crops used as spices, vegetables and medicinal plants worldwide.
- They are a relevant part of Ayurvedic medicine preparation and scientifically proven to heal and protect health. Ayurveda prioritises the cultivation of Allium plants like garlic and onion that have healing elements. Garlic is found best for women’s vaginal health and the smooth functioning of internal organs.
- Traditionally, the Allium crops like onion and garlic are a part of daily diets in Asia.
- The wild Allium can be poisonous in some cases. They would go against dogs and cats. The better step is don’t pick wild Allium for home consumption. The wild Allium can be poisonous to humans also.
- Allium genus needs water in the right proportion. If the soil is moist with enough water, there is no need to water them. Applying a balanced fertilizer gives better results in growth and healthy plants.
- The healing effect of Allium vegetables like garlic, onions, leeks, shallots are proven in laboratory studies. They are rich in flavours and organosulfur compounds which have tumor inhibitory properties that can strengthen healthy cells.
The Grace and Good Manners of Allium in the Garden
- Allium plants are ornamental plants giving a good and graceful feeling in the garden. The visitors will appreciate its variant forms and colours that entertain the garden experience.
- They are exquisite beauty in both flower and leaf that deserve a hearty welcome in the perennial gardens.
- Allium plants are easy to grow, taking not much space. They are of a broad palette of colours, heights, bloom times and flower forms bringing the best choice for fresh or dried bouquets.
- Allium is a big family with more than 700 different types of Allium in the world and they have become the favourite of plant lovers and horticulturists.
- Ornamental alliums grow in any soil as long as it is well-drained and they adore sunlight. These plants are deer and rodent resistant that multiply naturally even untouched for years.
- Allium plants are beautiful, long-lasting and bee-friendly that refurnish gardens for an elegant look.