Allium Atropurpureum Planting & Care

The allium atropurpureum is a gem for the garden. They are insect-friendly, low-maintenance and bring an explosion of color to the garden. Striking about the plant are the beautiful, purple-red flowers that bloom between May and July. It is an ideal plant for adding dark tones and contrast in the garden. The plant is not called the queen of the night among the alliums for nothing. The plant does not flower in a full spherical shape like many other ornamental onion species, but grows in a semi-spherical shape. However, this does not make the plant less beautiful; the flowers come in multiples and bloom in a star shape. After flowering, the allium atropurpureum also has an ornamental value in the garden; the plant forms seed pods with an almost black-looking color. The seed pods will remain on the plant long after flowering. The plant is approximately 60 to 80 centimeters high.

Allium atropurpureum plants

Once in the right place, the allium atropurpureum is not a complicated plant to maintain. It is a hardy plant, so you don’t have to worry about it during the winter. The plant has a slight preference for a spot in the sun, but will also function well when placed in partial shade.

In terms of soil type, you should take into account that the plant should be placed on well-drained, nutritious and calcareous soil. Most allium species also grow in nature on warm, rocky soil. If you have moist soil, you can mix gravel or hydro granules with the soil to make it drier. Make sure that the plant does not get wet feet, especially during the winter. This can cause irreparable damage.

Plant Allium atropurpureum bulbs

The allium atropurpureum bulbs are best planted between September and November. Early November is preferable, because otherwise the plant can come up too early. In general, the planting hole should be three times the size of the bulb. If you have a bulb of 4 centimeters in size, the bulb must therefore be planted 12 centimeters deep. You should plant the bulb with the roots down and the tip up.

To keep the soil from getting too moist, you can place small pebbles at the bottom of the hole. If you want to place several allium atropurpureum next to each other, you should maintain a planting distance of approximately 12 centimeters.

Transplanting Allium atropurpureum

Sometimes you find out afterwards that the plant is not in the ideal place or position within the garden. Although it is never ideal for the plant, you can happily transplant the allium atropurpureum. This is best done when the leaves of the plant have died, after flowering. Dig up the bulb carefully, taking care not to damage the bulb. Then plant the bulb directly in the excavated hole where you want to transplant the bulb.

Flowering time allium atropurpureum

The flowering time of the allium atropurpureum takes place between May and July. The plant will display beautiful, purple-red flowers in May. The flowers themselves grow in multiples in a star shape next to each other. Unlike many other allium species, the flowers do not bloom in a full spherical shape, but in a semi-spherical shape. At the end of flowering and after flowering, black looking seed pods will form around the flowers. These will remain on the plant long after flowering.

Is allium atropurpureum a perennial plant?

Allium atropurpureum is a perennial bulb, which means you will return to the garden for several years in a row. They usually flower profusely for 4 to 5 years, after which the flowering will decrease. In that case you can harvest the bulbs after flowering. You remove the bulbs from the ground and store them throughout the summer in a dry place (preferably with a temperature between 20 and 25 degrees). You can then plant the bulbs back in the ground in the fall and you will see (if all goes well) that they will have a full, beautiful bloom again the following year.

Care allium atropurpureum

When the allium atropurpureum is placed in the right place, it requires little maintenance. In the open ground, the plant needs a little extra water during warm and dry periods. Keep in mind that the water of the plant can drain well so that it does not get wet feet.

After flowering you can cut back the faded flower heads with the stems to the ground. Keep in mind that the black seed pods, which can still have an ornamental value after flowering, will also disappear. The leaves, which often turn yellow, can also be cut back during flowering. To enjoy the full bloom of the plant for longer, you should fertilize the plant at least once a year.

Prune Allium atropurpureum

To put it first: the allium atropurpureum does not need to be pruned for its health. In fact, when you prune the plant back you will take away some of its decorative value; the black-looking seed pods that appear after flowering. However, you may prefer to prune the plant back because you no longer find it attractive in the garden after it has bloomed. In that case, you can cut back both the flower stems and the faded flower heads after the plant has bloomed. Yellow discolored leaves can be cut away during flowering, but can also be removed after flowering.

Fertilize Allium atropurpureum

To ensure that the allium atropurpureum has a beautiful bloom year after year, it is wise to fertilize the plant once a year. It is best to do this at the beginning of spring, between the end of March and the end of April. You can use organic fertilizers for this. Give a handful of fertilizer per plant and spread it around the plant. Make sure you mix the soil well with the fertilizer.

Combine Allium atropurpureum

It can be wonderfully combined with the allium atropurpureum. Thanks to its purple-red flowers and black seed pods, the plant can create contrast in the border. The plant combines very nicely with white and pink plants that bloom in the same period. They can also combine very well with each other, so you can plant them in a large group. Some plants that the allium atropurpureum combines very nicely with are:

  • larkspur
  • Peonies
  • Iris
  • Ornamental grasses
  • cow parsley
  • Oriental poppy
  • licorice plant
  • Lavender
  • Columbine

More than enough options to choose from!

Propagate Allium atropurpureum

The allium atropurpureum can be propagated by dividing the plant. You can do this 4 to 5 years after planting. You can divide the plant by removing the bulb immediately after flowering. Then let the bulb dry indoors. Make sure that the bulb is not in the sun, as this can damage the plant.

When you take the bulb out of the ground you will see that the bulb has smaller bulbs attached to it. You can carefully remove these small bulbs from the mother bulb and then you can plant all the bulbs in the ground. The mother bulb will flower again the following year and the smaller bulbs will flower within two or three years.

Extra tip: use allium atropurpureum as a cut flower

Looking for a suitable cut flower? Then the allium atropurpureum can offer a solution. Thanks to its sturdy stem and beautiful inflorescence, the plant lends itself perfectly alone in a vase, but also among a bouquet. If you want to use the plant as a cut flower, you should cut the stem when the flowers are just opening. To avoid an onion smell, it is best to place the plants in cold water for a while.

Buy Allium atropurpureum

Convinced to buy allium atropurpureum? Fortunately, you can easily order the plant online. Click on the button below to order the plant.

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