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Uses

Toxic parts

Although no individual reports regarding this species have been seen, there have been cases of poisoning caused by the consumption, in large quantities and by some mammals, of certain members of this genus. Dogs seem to be particularly susceptible[1].

Edible uses

Notes

The leaves and long white blanched stem are eaten cooked[2][3][4][5]. They can also be cut into thin slices and be added to salads[5]. A mild onion flavour with a delightful sweetness[183, K].

Bulb - raw or cooked. The bulb is produced in the plants second year of growth (that is, after it is normally harvested). The bulb is somewhat larger if the plant is prevented from flowering[K].

Flowers - raw. Used as a garnish on salads, though they are rather on the dry side and less pleasant than many other members of the genus[K].

Flowers

Leaves

Material uses

The juice of the plant is used as a moth repellent. The whole plant is said to repel insects and moles[6].

Unknown part

Medicinal uses(Warning!)

This species has the same medicinal virtues as garlic, but in a much milder and less effective form[7]. These virtues are as follows:-

Garlic has a very long folk history of use in a wide range of ailments, particularly ailments such as ringworm, Candida and vaginitis where its fungicidal, antiseptic, tonic and parasiticidal properties have proved of benefit[8]. It is also said to have anticancer activity[8]. Daily use of garlic in the diet has been shown to have a very beneficial effect on the body, especially the blood system and the heart. For example, demographic studies suggest that garlic is responsible for the low incidence of arteriosclerosis in areas of Italy and Spain where consumption of the bulb is heavy[9].

The bulb is said to be anthelmintic, antiasthmatic, anticholesterolemic, antiseptic, antispasmodic, cholagogue, diaphoretic, diuretic, expectorant, febrifuge, stimulant, stomachic, tonic, vasodilator[10][11][12][13][14][15]. The crushed bulb may be applied as a poultice to ease the pain of bites, stings etc[10][11][12][13].

Ecology

Ecosystem niche/layer

Ecological Functions

Nothing listed.

Forage

Nothing listed.

Shelter

Nothing listed.

Propagation

Seed - for an early crop, or for larger plants, sow the seed in early spring in a greenhouse and plant out in May. For smaller or later plants, sow April in an outdoor seedbed and plant out as space permits in July or even August.

Practical Plants is currently lacking information on propagation instructions of Allium porrum. Help us fill in the blanks! Edit this page to add your knowledge.



Cultivation

Prefers a sunny position in a light well-drained soil[16] but succeeds in most soils[3]. Grows well in heavy clay soils. Prefers an open situation[16][4]. Does best in a soil that was well fed for a previous crop[16]. Tolerates a pH in the range 5.2 to 8.3.

The leek is a widely cultivated vegetable, there are many named varieties[5]. Young plants are often planted quite deeply in the soil (8 - 10cm deep) in order to blanch the lower stem, it is also a common practice to earth up the growing plants in order to blanch right the way up the stems. Whilst this does make the stems more tender, it also results in a loss of minerals and vitamins. Although commonly treated as a biennial, this plant is a true perennial, perennating by means of small lateral growths and often developing a roundish bulb at the base of the main growth[16]. A relatively slow-growing plant, it can be interplanted with faster maturing species such as lettuces[17]. The bulbs should be planted fairly deeply[16]. Grows well with most plants, especially roses, carrots, celery, celariac, beet and chamomile, but it inhibits the growth of legumes[18][6][19]. This plant is a bad companion for alfalfa, each species negatively affecting the other[17].

Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer[20].

Crops

Problems, pests & diseases

Associations & Interactions

There are no interactions listed for Allium porrum. Do you know of an interaction that should be listed here? edit this page to add it.

Polycultures & Guilds

There are no polycultures listed which include Allium porrum.

Descendants

Cultivars

Varieties

None listed.

Subspecies

None listed.

Full Data

This table shows all the data stored for this plant.

Taxonomy
Binomial name
Allium porrum
Genus
Allium
Family
Alliaceae
Imported References
Edible uses
Material uses & Functions
Botanic
Propagation
Cultivation
Environment
Cultivation
Uses
Edible uses
None listed.
Material uses
None listed.
Medicinal uses
None listed.
Functions & Nature
Functions
Provides forage for
Provides shelter for
Environment
Hardiness Zone
6
Heat Zone
?
Water
moderate
Sun
full sun
Shade
no shade
Soil Texture
Soil Water Retention
Environmental Tolerances
    Ecosystems
    Native Climate Zones
    None listed.
    Adapted Climate Zones
    None listed.
    Native Geographical Range
    None listed.
    Native Environment
    None listed.
    Ecosystem Niche
    None listed.
    Root Zone Tendancy
    None listed.
    Life
    Deciduous or Evergreen
    ?
    Herbaceous or Woody
    ?
    Life Cycle
    ?
    Growth Rate
    ?
    Mature Size
    Fertility
    ?
    Pollinators
    Flower Colour
    ?
    Flower Type

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    References

    1. ? Cooper. M. and Johnson. A. Poisonous Plants in Britain and their Effects on Animals and Man. HMSO ISBN 0112425291 (1984-00-00)
    2. ? 2.02.1 Hedrick. U. P. Sturtevant's Edible Plants of the World. Dover Publications ISBN 0-486-20459-6 (1972-00-00)
    3. ? 3.03.13.2 Simons. New Vegetable Growers Handbook. Penguin ISBN 0-14-046-050-0 (1977-00-00)
    4. ? 4.04.14.2 Thompson. B. The Gardener's Assistant. Blackie and Son. (1878-00-00)
    5. ? 5.05.15.25.3 Facciola. S. Cornucopia - A Source Book of Edible Plants. Kampong Publications ISBN 0-9628087-0-9 (1990-00-00)
    6. ? 6.06.16.2 Riotte. L. Companion Planting for Successful Gardening. Garden Way, Vermont, USA. ISBN 0-88266-064-0 (1978-00-00)
    7. ? 7.07.1 Bown. D. Encyclopaedia of Herbs and their Uses. Dorling Kindersley, London. ISBN 0-7513-020-31 (1995-00-00)
    8. ? 8.08.18.2 Duke. J. A. and Ayensu. E. S. Medicinal Plants of China Reference Publications, Inc. ISBN 0-917256-20-4 (1985-00-00)
    9. ? 9.09.1 Foster. S. & Duke. J. A. A Field Guide to Medicinal Plants. Eastern and Central N. America. Houghton Mifflin Co. ISBN 0395467225 (1990-00-00)
    10. ? 10.010.110.2 Grieve. A Modern Herbal. Penguin ISBN 0-14-046-440-9 (1984-00-00)
    11. ? 11.011.111.2 Launert. E. Edible and Medicinal Plants. Hamlyn ISBN 0-600-37216-2 (1981-00-00)
    12. ? 12.012.112.2 Holtom. J. and Hylton. W. Complete Guide to Herbs. Rodale Press ISBN 0-87857-262-7 (1979-00-00)
    13. ? 13.013.113.2 Lust. J. The Herb Book. Bantam books ISBN 0-553-23827-2 (1983-00-00)
    14. ? 14.014.1 Uphof. J. C. Th. Dictionary of Economic Plants. Weinheim (1959-00-00)
    15. ? 15.015.1 Mills. S. Y. The Dictionary of Modern Herbalism. ()
    16. ? 16.016.116.216.316.4 F. Chittendon. RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956 Oxford University Press (1951-00-00)
    17. ? 17.017.1 Allardice.P. A - Z of Companion Planting. Cassell Publishers Ltd. ISBN 0-304-34324-2 (1993-00-00)
    18. ? Philbrick H. and Gregg R. B. Companion Plants. Watkins (1979-00-00)
    19. ? Hatfield. A. W. How to Enjoy your Weeds. Frederick Muller Ltd ISBN 0-584-10141-4 (1977-00-00)
    20. ? Thomas. G. S. Perennial Garden Plants J. M. Dent & Sons, London. ISBN 0 460 86048 8 (1990-00-00)
    21. ? Huxley. A. The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992. MacMillan Press ISBN 0-333-47494-5 (1992-00-00)

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