Allium Species, False Garlic, Stag's Garlic, Crow Garlic, Wild Onion

Allium vineale

Family: Alliaceae
Genus: Allium (AL-ee-um) (Info)
Species: vineale (vin-AH-lee) (Info)
Synonym:Allium assimile
Synonym:Allium compactum
Synonym:Allium laxiflorum
Synonym:Allium littoreum
Synonym:Allium nitens
View this plant in a garden




Water Requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Sun Exposure:

Sun to Partial Shade



Foliage Color:



12-18 in. (30-45 cm)

18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

36-48 in. (90-120 cm)


6-9 in. (15-22 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)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us



Bloom Color:

Pale Green

White/Near White

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Late Spring/Early Summer

Mid Summer

Late Summer/Early Fall

Other details:

May be a noxious weed or invasive

Soil pH requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)

From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

Seed Collecting:

Unknown - Tell us


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

Birmingham, Alabama

Ben Lomond, California

Denver, Colorado

Monroe, Georgia

Benton, Kentucky

Clermont, Kentucky

Ewing, Kentucky

Georgetown, Kentucky

Hebron, Kentucky

Lexington, Kentucky

Louisville, Kentucky (2 reports)

Nicholasville, Kentucky

Brookeville, Maryland

Ellicott City, Maryland

Roslindale, Massachusetts

Cole Camp, Missouri

Mountain Grove, Missouri

Saint Louis, Missouri

Dayton, Ohio

Glouster, Ohio

Lebanon, Ohio

Hulbert, Oklahoma

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Knoxville, Tennessee

De Leon, Texas

Etoile, Texas

Houston, Texas

Seattle, Washington

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Apr 16, 2015, Ted_B from Birmingham, AL (Zone 8a) wrote:

It grows in the sun, it grows in the shade, it grows in moist areas, it grows in dry areas. Basically, it grows wherever it likes, regardless of what you think about it. But let's face it folks, this isn't exactly poison ivy.

While some may find A. vineale annoying, I don't find it a particularly alleopathic or an otherwise troubling intruder. What I do find are easily harvested bulbs in the springtime that add a tasty, healthy dose of garlic-like attributes to stir fries and stews. When the weeds give you lemons, make lemonade.

In a locale plagued with invasive Ligustrum, Nandina, Ornithogalum, and Mahonia, I'll take this one ... every time.


On Feb 20, 2014, coriaceous from ROSLINDALE, MA wrote:

This is one of the most pestilential of weeds. It's an invasive exotic pest, native to Europe, and frequently confused with our native A. canadense, which is much less often encountered. (A. canadense has flat leaves, A. vineale has round hollow leaves.) The flowering stems generally produce bulbils instead of flowers.

This species is summer dormant, putting up active leaves in both spring and fall. It often enters gardens hitchhiking on the root balls of nursery stock.

This is one of the most difficult of weeds to control, much less eradicate. It increases and spreads very rapidly. Yanking on the top growth snaps it off at soil level. The bulbs are generally deep, and attempts to dig it up just spread dormant hardshell bulblets around. Its hardshell bulblets ... read more


On Mar 13, 2008, onionqueen wrote:

over $1000 invested in removal
All for nothing
Chokes out everything but trees
crosses streets and every barrier you put up.
hoeing propagates it
composting propagates it
(only heat kills)

Just dug it out again, a mountainous pick-up load of infection. The millions of microscopic bulblets in the soil will come back as a carpet with the first drop of rain. Protect from rain perfectly for 5 yr before bulblets in soil no longer viable. A drop of rain in less than 5 yr, you only cultivated it on that parcel--comes back double every year.

It has been 16 yr of this that I know of, removing every year to no avail. A sink hole for your time. Death to your garden and your neighbors' gardens.

I w... read more


On Mar 13, 2008, Jazz_HR from Ivanić-Grad,
Croatia (Zone 7a) wrote:

Although it looks interesting in photo, in reality its not impresive. I wont grow it again.


On Feb 18, 2008, Terry from Murfreesboro, TN (Zone 7a) wrote:

A definite weed, and very invasive; listed as a noxious weed as close as Arkansas, as well as California and Hawaii. I'm surprised it isn't listed as problematic for other states.

Hand-digging the clumps is difficult because you inevitably leave behind some bulbs, which will come back and multiply with a vengeance. Chemical control requires precise timing and perseverance (and a willingness to use chemicals, which works for some gardeners, not for others.)


On Jun 7, 2007, caitrine from Saint Louis, MO wrote:

I've allowed it to grow in my garden since supposedly it does well as a companion plant to reduce unwanted pests. I'm also a fan of garlic so I like having its wild cousin around. If there's a spot where I don't want it, it's really easy to yank out of the ground (ie, easier than your usual weed pulling efforts).


On Dec 28, 2004, winter_unfazed from Rural Webster County, MO (Zone 6a) wrote:

Not the same species as Northwestern onions, Prairie onions, or Ramps. This is a very invasive weed. It grows rapidly twice a year, once in October / November and again in February/March. Long thin tufts and tiny bulbs are cooked with eggs and are good in tacos as well.. The tufts can also be rubbed on one's neck to deter blackflies, or stuffed in corners to deter house pests. lf the bulbs are planted somewhere and not mown, they will have flowers in June like those of domestic onions.


On Dec 27, 2004, WUVIE from Hulbert, OK (Zone 7a) wrote:

A ritual in Oklahoma often celebrated with "Wild Onion and Egg" dinners.

Easy to grow and easy to dig, very plentiful and a frequent visitor at farmer's markets.

While not for the uptight gardener, the Wild Onion is a treat for those such as myself who live in the country and have fond memories which include the Wild Onion. What fun to see the onions pop up to remind us that planting time is closer than we think.


On Nov 12, 2004, smiln32 from Oklahoma City, OK (Zone 7a) wrote:

They will grow in sunny or shady conditions, too. They aren't very picky about soil conditions. When they flower, the color can range from white to pink.


On Jun 13, 2004, melody from Benton, KY (Zone 7a) wrote:

Invasive and nearly impossible to get rid of. Wild onions or wild garlic, as it's sometimes called are perinnials.

They can ruin grain fields and are hated by dairy farmers, as the milk and butter can take on the flavor if livestock eats very many of them.

One of the first green things to sprout in early Spring, the only thing I can say positive about them is that when you smell them after mowing your lawn for the first time, you know that warmer weather is quickly approaching.