My. Allium, and a question...

North Brunswick Town, NJ(Zone 7a)

Hi all,
I hope I am not over posting, I started this thread to make contued posts and pics, etc of my first time growing Allium Purple Sensation, and to ask one question.
Is this normal behavior for the foliage at this stage? Pic was taken this morning, I am wondering if this one is suffering or if it is normal.
In 2 pics you can see the one allium "twisting", almost curling under. The 3rd pic is also in the same spot, its the next 3 allium all growing fine. I planted 9 bulbs in all, and all came up :-) but I am curious as to the growth of this one. Is it ok?
Thanks in advance,

PS - I will add updates and pics when they bloom. Thanks! :-)

Thumbnail by dannyboy91 Thumbnail by dannyboy91 Thumbnail by dannyboy91
Clarksville, TN(Zone 6b)

It is most likely doing just fine. Leaves on many plants can tend to curl at times. There is even a variety of allium that is bred for the curly leaf trait.

Looking forward to seeing those beautiful blooms!

North Brunswick Town, NJ(Zone 7a)

Thanks for your reply, it's encouraging to know I haven't ruined everything yet! LOL.
It's only the one out of 9 planted / growing, so I'm sure it's not a big deal. Thanks again, and I'll def share some pics :-)
My 1st seed/ bulb garden from scratch , what an exciting year this will be! :-)


Ayrshire Scotland, United Kingdom

Dannyboy, your plants look really fine to me, the ornamental onion sometimes drops the leaves as the flower bud/ stems begin to show, once the flowers are full, you might fend the foliage actually turns yellow, and will droops onto the ground. Please don't remove the foliage as this should be allowed to die back naturally, as the foliage dies down and looses colour, it is sending all the goodness back down to the bulb,
The seeds you grew will already have grown a bulb and it will get larger as each your passes.
the best part is the large round flowerhead that is a show stopper. Try NOT get the bulb wet when watering as the weight of the water will pull the flower down.

One little tip though, IF I were you, I would put a barrier of either wood, bricks or other substance along the fence line between the soil and the wire fence, it looks like the grass from the other side of fence is going to be a constant problem, grass has a habit of running roots that creep under the soil, dig down and place a plank of treated wood (use a wood product to paint on the wood and choose one that is SAFE for plant roots as the plants your growing mature, there roots will spread out too maybe in the direction of the wood.

Don't know about your area but here, I go on line and search out OLD SCAFOLDING PLANKS, these are well weathered, normally strong BUT wont pass the health safety nuts that wander around building sites, they are not expensive here. They make great bed edges and raised beds too.

Your doing a great job, just try relax and enjoy your new found garden hobby, ask as many questions as you like and remember, we all had to learn when we began at first.
I can honestly say Danny, after about 50 years of gardening, I still learn new stuff, Gardens are like their owners, it all takes time to evolve. you never stop learning new ways, new methods, new plants and new friends, as you grow more confidence, you will meet up with new people in the garden store, on a bus or in a park, there are gardeners world wide who just love sharing stuff with anyone interested enough to ask how to do something LOL.
Take good care and have a great first season.
Best Regards. WeeNel.

North Brunswick Town, NJ(Zone 7a)

The wood is a much better idea that the plastic edging I was considering, thanks WeeNel. And thanks for all your help around the board. :-)

Ayrshire Scotland, United Kingdom

No Problem Danny, most of the time we know a lot of the answers anyway BUT, just need reassurances from others, you sound like you are beginning to enjoy the gardening and making good progress with your yard. make sure it stays fun and not a chore. When it becomes a chore, most people give up and that's such a pity, they forget there's no time limit on a garden as they grow and mature along with the owners, LOL.

Well done and keep asking all those questions, always people here to help and encourage.

Best Regards.

North Brunswick Town, NJ(Zone 7a)

Well they are doing great, thanks again all. :-)
It appears they are budding already! I thought they would bloom much later in the spring, especially since we were still in the 20's at night only 3 weeks ago, well they look good so far, now to work on that grass encroaching in, lol.

pic 1 is the plant I was concerned about, pic 2 is a larger one with more foliage, but both buds looking good. :-)

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North Brunswick Town, NJ(Zone 7a)

Hi everyone,
I hate to do it, but I need to bug ya with another question. I've upload pics from just now of the Allium, seems the foliage is browning at the tips on all the plants. I'm wondering if this is because their flower buds/ shoots are coming up, and putting all their nutrients into the flower shoot? if so should I fertilize, and what with? I've read to use a 10-10-10 ratio, but was wondering if the old blue stuff (MG) would be ok.

I also have tulips that simply will not grow, let alone bloom. (Final pic) They are in the same bed, along with some daffodils that did great this year. I tilled the soil very well with some fresh top soil and humus and manure mixture in the fall when I planted the bulbs, so they have rich soil. The tulips I bought at Home Depot about a month ago (my mistake- lol) but they have not grown an inch since planting. One tulip was already open, other than that, they have not done well at all.

Any ideas? Thanks in advance, I really appreciate the help.

Thumbnail by dannyboy91 Thumbnail by dannyboy91 Thumbnail by dannyboy91 Thumbnail by dannyboy91
Ayrshire Scotland, United Kingdom

First of all Danny, please be assured your NOT asking tooooo many questions. This site was deemed necessary because people like you, me and probably our Grannies needed somewhere to go for some help, info or even just to help out each other by showing off our results in the gardens we care for, please keep asking !!!!!

OK, now back to your plants, Tulips you mentioned ONE was in bloom, was that when you planted them, (in bloom) or was the bulbs dormant at time of planting ???????
If in bloom at time of planting, it's never good to do the job at that time. All my tulips are about over flowering for now, I do actually find Tulips can be a bit temperamental to be honest and I have tried all different types, colours, sizes and are a hit miss.
I think soil and climate has a lot to do with it for me, too wet so need to plant new bulbs each time, when I dig, I find the bulbs all rotted and mushy, I even tried gravel and sand at the bottom if the planting hole, No better.
I see gardens here in UK with beautiful displays of Tulips appearing to stand erect waving at me LOL.

As regards the Alliums, the pics look fine to me, the browning is normal at this time, it is the start of the natural die back, as the flowers are produced, the foliage dies back. I think your eyes are seeing this more than I would because MY Alliums are planted in a mixed border with other plants offering support to the tall stems, IF the flower heads get too wet, they just topple over with the weight as the flower heads are made up of dozens of tiny little star shaped flowers clustered together making a nice ball.

Feeding is done either after flowering or at the start of the season when new shoots are seen, this is like giving a little tonic to boost the energy for the season ahead.

Now the garden is taking shape I would advise placing some garden canes or like, beside the plants when tidying up in autumn, this gives you a marker as to where you have things growing and a label to tell you what they are. Remember Danny, all those plants will die off and be under the soil for the winter months and as you tend the beds, maybe even throwing top mulches on the beds, come next spring, you could stand on the tiny shoots of bulbs as they have not shown through the top soil yet, so marking help avoid this trampling the wrong place.
As you continue to add plants / shrubs / or trees to the beds, you wont be tempted to see just one or two plants, you still need to look and examine your plants BUT not just a single type of plant.
Even in a cramped border situation like I have, you still spy a problem as you get down and dirty while getting to know your plants, weeding, feeding, staking and sometimes having to move or split up clumps of flowering plants as they get old and perhaps stop flowering due to over crowding, WHO said gardening was an easy, laid back hobby LOL.

Hope this helps you out a bit, try relax and stop worrying so much, Nature has and knows better than us sometimes, BUT we still try to beat it Ha, Ha, Ha.

Enjoy your garden Danny, have a great season and keep in touch no matter what you want to ask, someone here will try help with advice, were all here for each other.
With Kindest Regards.

North Brunswick Town, NJ(Zone 7a)

As always WeeNel, thanks for the help. To answer your question about the tulips, yes one was blooming when I planted them. I bought them in a small plastic container with what looked like about 6 bulbs started, and one was just opening. I did not buy the ones already standing 12" high and in full bloom because I thought I would give them time to grow and bloom in a few weeks or so from then. That was April 1st. About 2 days after I planted the one open tulip fell apart, lol, petals just fell off, leaving the pistol/ stamen exposed and nothing else! It was kinda funny looking, haha.
I figured that was a result of transplant maybe, but thought the others would grow in fine. Guess I was mistaken... It has been an unusually cold spring here, with nightly temps still in the low 40's every night, and some down to the upper 30's on a few nights. I lost a lot of my seedlings thanks to that, cosmos especially, but assumed tulips were used to that weather anyway.

Well thank you again, I really appreciate it WeeNel. you are a God-send for a first time flower gardener! Maybe they will come up next year, if not i will simply try something else! :-)

Oh, and yes, marking bulbs is something I wil have to do this year for sure, even though I did not plant many. I will even need to mark areas where I planted seeds, as many of them should self-sow again next year, that would be a nice treat :-)
Thanks again, have a great week,

Ayrshire Scotland, United Kingdom

In truth Dannyboy, you have probably purchased Tulip bulbs meant for growing in-doors, there are a lot of spring bulbs like Tulips, Crocus, daf's, Hyacinths etc that are grown for displays in-doors, sometimes after flowering and allowing the foliage to die down, you can plant outside in autumn and they grow away fine BUT normally, these indoor bulbs are stored, dried and left in a dark cool place like garage and brought back out again say around late September where they are given a little water at a time till real growth shows then treat like all bulbs BUT in-doors.

I'm really not sure what these bulbs are treated with but it's the growers who actually begin the process by treating these plants right after they germinate from seeds, or from parent plants that give out little bulbils, anyway, the treatment these bulbs receive normally make it impossible for them to flourish outside as they are too delicate to grow a0 in the type of soil we have in gardens b) climate too cold for delicate plants and c) there was every possibility Danny the bulbs being purchased as indoors went right into shock at the sudden change of temp and other conditions.

As you get more into buying, growing and germinating, you will soon learn that ALL plants bought from INSIDE a store or under cover from the plant growers, they actually will always need a week or so of inside at night and outside for a few hours (increasing that time as you go) do this until it is warm enough to plant out or pot up and able to leave outside. Here in UK I never put any plants grown inside till end of May BUT before that I have spent several weeks doing in / out from about April but again, it depends on the weather as you have discovered like us Here in UK, the climate, temps and wind factors have all changed and made seasonal gardening times go completely by the by.
Hope this makes a little sense for you as I hate to think you have wasted time and money loosing plants at this time of year, as before Danny, be patient, nature knows best at the end of the day, because a seed packet tells you to plant between Feb- April, it is doing a general timescale where in the right conditions and temp, germination can take place, the seed packets also give a temp for germination and to achieve this, sometimes we have to germinate indoors AND keep the plants indoors till the outdoor temp is warm enough. that's where the indoor and outside for a few hours at a time are so good for the little tender plants, good light and a bit of natural heat outside but at falling temps they need put back under shelter till next day IF warm enough, follow that Dannyboy are you will have a garden that blooms and grows it's heart out to reward you. patience is a gardeners main virtue.

Best of luck and keep on gardening, it all falls into place eventually, we all had to learn just like you are now.
Best Regards. WeeNel.

Opp, AL(Zone 8b)

Danny, I have no idea about cultivar tulips, but Alliums are sturdy bulbs that, like any newly planted perennials, need a period of adjustment to reach full glory. Although it's quite common (and we are led to expect) for blooms to show up the first year, know that in future years, you will have the pleasure of seeing mature, well-adjusted bulbs perform prolifically and reliably... and eventually their offspring too.

North Brunswick Town, NJ(Zone 7a)

Well, here are some pics of this years blooms :) thank you all so much for you responses and encpuragement, I think I might have given up a while ago had it not been for the wonderful people on this forum. Thank you so much for taking your time to educate and motive me! :)

Even though this is not the idea I had in mind when planting, lol, they still bloomed wonderfully.
Just ignore the string in the picture, lol, my sisters dog was here WAAAAYYYYY longer than he was supposed to be. I had to use chicken wire and ugly strings even to keep him out of the garden areas, but all in all these Allium put on quite a show! :-)

Enjoy the pics, you guys helped create them! Thanks so much!

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Clarksville, TN(Zone 6b)

Beautiful, dannyb. I'm so happy you didn't give up on them. My foliage often looks like that but no reason for alarm. The blooms are gorgeous, aren't they?

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Rancho Santa Rita, TX(Zone 8a)

I am lusting for alliums !

What kinds did yall plant ?

What are the names of the ones in the pictures ?

North Brunswick Town, NJ(Zone 7a)

Those are Allium - Purple Sensation variety.

Cville - They are beautiful I love them! Your's look great! Very full!
Next year I will plant more to hide the base, but for a small start this year I think they did fine, I know I am pleased. Given what my garden went through I'm happy anything grew, lol.
Thanks for looking and for the advice :-) I do love this forum :-)


Clarksville, TN(Zone 6b)

Mine are also 'Purple Sensation'.

Thanks, Danny. I know what you mean about a rough year for gardens. At least around here. I had some tall white alliums (Mt. Everest) but so far, I don't see them. :(

Rancho Santa Rita, TX(Zone 8a)

We all had a bad year for gardens, between
drought, forest fires, stinkin cold for too long,
storms, even Nigara Falls freezing over ...

But Hope springs eternal !

The allium I most want is Ambassador,
followed by Caeruleum, Red Mohican,
and Forelock,, but they are all so
beautiful and it is sooo...hard to decide.

North Brunswick Town, NJ(Zone 7a)

Yeah, I agree with you there! I am considering GlobeMasters for next year as well, maybe in the opposite corner of the yard ;-)

Rancho Santa Rita, TX(Zone 8a)

The one I want most is "the Ambassador"

Welcme to DG Dannyboy !

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Clarksville, TN(Zone 6b)

I've had Globe Master. It's a nice one too.

I don't think Danny is new to DG?

North Brunswick Town, NJ(Zone 7a)

WOW what a picture!!! I'm ready to tear up my lawn now, lol. I've been wanting to find a way to stop cutting it anyway, haha!
That's incredible, I know I will never have a field like that, but I do hope that when the ones I have begin to spread their bulbs and seeds they fill in the corner nicely. I would be very happy with that :)

And thank you BajaBlue! I'm sending you a Dmail right after posting this.

You're right Cville, I have been a free member for not quite a year until now ;)
Thanks again everybody!

Opp, AL(Zone 8b)

Fantastic pics of fantastic plants!

Rancho Santa Rita, TX(Zone 8a)

Well, Danny, thy DO multiply !
So its not im[ossible.

cville, yes but Danny is now a full-fledged member.

I've been researching alliums, and colorblends
seems to have the best prices and good quality.

There may be a group buy in our future.

North Brunswick Town, NJ(Zone 7a)

I got mine at the last place one would think to find quality plants, etc. At uh, hmm not supposed to name the stores right? Well, umm not the orange one, lol, the blue and grey colored hardware store! It had Lowe price tho ;)

9 bulbs, $3.89

I couldn't resist. Very happy with their growth. I find it so funny that. One is near 3 feet tall, yet the one a foot away is only around one foot tall! And that is the fullest flower! Diversity is a good thing tho. That area is very young in its garden phase so to speak, I'm just happy I had something to line the fence corner with. :)
I had 3 stages of growth so far though, daffodils then tulips the the allium. I do have some zinnia and cosmos in there still growing from seed, not ready to bloom yet so there will still be more color yet to come.

Here's one of the contrast light makes on them. Same flower, different time of day. The cloudy day really made the purple POP, and the sunshine added its own tint. Very cool :-)

*i am lazy with the weeding, I admit it, lol...

Thumbnail by dannyboy91 Thumbnail by dannyboy91
Ayrshire Scotland, United Kingdom

Dannyboy, early next spring, look out for tiny little seedlings growing beside the spot your bulbs are growing, they look like small blades of grass, these are the germinated seedlings from those flowers you have right now, A lot of people remove the dying flowers as they don't want masses of the same type of flowerheads, but personally, I would rather separate the the little plants that germinated after a couple of years than remove the flowering heads of the bulbs, as they die, in winter they look really cool when they become skeletal or get frosted by winter cold, they feed the birds and also IF you want to germinate in pots, just remove several tiny green bulblet's from the flowers, (little green balls) try allow the balls to open slightly showing the black / brown seeds, then sprinkle onto seed growing compost, in a pot, sit the pot into a saucer of water till the compost turns dark brown, then drain, only re-water when the soil is dry, the seeds will germinate after about 4-6 weeks, look like grass but next spring, separate the seedlings and plant in a sheltered area of the garden, mark the spot and allow to grow on for 2 years, 3rd year you should have flowering bulbs to grow or give to friends, swap for different types too.

Good luck and Kindest Regards.

Rancho Santa Rita, TX(Zone 8a)

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