Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Elephant Garlic
Allium ampeloprasum

Family: Alliaceae
Genus: Allium (AL-ee-um) (Info)
Species: ampeloprasum (am-pel-oh-PRAY-sum) (Info)

One vendor has this plant for sale.

17 members have or want this plant for trade.


18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

9-12 in. (22-30 cm)

USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)
USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)
USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)
USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)
USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)
USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)
USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun


Bloom Color:

Bloom Time:
Mid Summer


Other details:
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Soil pH requirements:
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
By dividing the bulb's scales
From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall
From seed; winter sow in vented containers, coldframe or unheated greenhouse
From seed; sow indoors before last frost

Seed Collecting:
Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds

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There are a total of 20 photos.
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5 positives
4 neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive Irislover_73 On Jun 1, 2012, Irislover_73 from Bellefonte, AR wrote:

This plant is SOOOO easy to grow and is not bothered by pests in our garden. The mild flavor makes it perfect for cooking, especially when children are eating the dish. The only thing with our's is that it does not make cloves, each plant produces just one big bulb.

Positive graceful_garden On May 31, 2012, graceful_garden from Hahira, GA (Zone 8b) wrote:

Be sure to save the bulbils that form amongst the roots of Elephant Garlic - plant them, & they are supposed to form a solid bulb the first year, then a multi-cloved "head" the second year. Just harvesting my first real crop of Elephant garlic - after planting purchased "pearls" last fall. These pearls are young solid bulbs. Have about 6 bulbils on each of the harvested "heads", so will cure these & plant them in the fall.

Positive trooperwon On May 22, 2012, trooperwon from New Paltz, NY (Zone 5a) wrote:

I planted the cloves in June of 2011. It did not flower. I left them in the ground all winter. they came back to life this spring of 2012 and they are about to flower. I will collect the seeds and try to grow the plants from seed next year.

Positive grovespirit On Mar 1, 2011, grovespirit from Sunset Valley, TX (Zone 9a) wrote:

I like to grow this plant just for its lovely flowers, because I don't want to have to water it a lot to get the big, edible cloves from it. Produces a very ornamental inflorescence similar to the commercial showy allium called 'drumstick allium'.

Positive texasflora_com On Apr 13, 2009, texasflora_com from De Leon, TX (Zone 8a) wrote:

I find large clumps of this garlic (or actually leek) growing wild around many old homeplaces that were abandoned long ago. I contacted the garlic expert Bob at and he told me what it was and that if watered, it would really form the large cloves familiar in the supermarket, but I've never seen these plants actually do so, but most I've seen got no care at all and survived all droughts, so maybe with some care, they will form the cloves. Bob said the plant was introduced by German settlers in Texas 150 years ago.

Neutral Scorpioangel On Sep 1, 2005, Scorpioangel from Gold Hill, OR (Zone 7a) wrote:

just a side note .... critters also like this garlic. Ground squirrils, voles, and gophers. Lost a clump of EG again this year. Thank goodness I have it planted elsewhere.

Neutral emilyrasmus On May 8, 2005, emilyrasmus from Portland, OR (Zone 8b) wrote:

A number of elephant garlic bulbswere planted in the garden a number of years ago and now it's growing in every bed, even the shady beds. It's growing everywhere. From when I see a little stalk, I leave it until the next year and then harvest the mild-tasting cloves. It's bothered by few pests, but quickly multiplies.

Neutral frostweed On Apr 7, 2005, frostweed from Josephine, Arlington, TX (Zone 8a) wrote:

I love Elephant garlic, it is very easy to grow and very reliable, the cloves are large and very mild. I normally grow enough to keep us and our friends supplied for the year. Also the cloves can be frozen whole on a tray, and after they are frozen they can be bagged and they won't stick together, giving you access to whichever ammount of garlic you might need any time of year.

Neutral lupinelover On Jan 23, 2003, lupinelover from Grove City, OH (Zone 6a) wrote:

Elephant garlic is very mild, its cloves are much bigger than regular garlic. It is really more closely related to leeks than true garlic. It can be used as a substitute for either in cooking.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Mobile, Alabama
Muscle Shoals, Alabama
Tuscumbia, Alabama
Harrison, Arkansas
Lancaster, California
Soquel, California
Hawthorne, Florida
Hilliard, Florida
Jacksonville, Florida
Cleveland, Georgia
Hahira, Georgia
Snellville, Georgia
Statesboro, Georgia
Traverse City, Michigan
Marietta, Mississippi
Mathiston, Mississippi
New Paltz, New York
Greenville, North Carolina
Vinton, Ohio
Garber, Oklahoma
Hulbert, Oklahoma
Gold Hill, Oregon
Portland, Oregon (2 reports)
South Beach, Oregon
Cookeville, Tennessee
Knoxville, Tennessee
Abilene, Texas (2 reports)
Arlington, Texas
Austin, Texas
De Leon, Texas
Georgetown, Texas
Houston, Texas
Kerrville, Texas
San Antonio, Texas
Sandy, Utah
Jonesville, Virginia
Madison Heights, Virginia
Bellevue, Washington

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