Plant Allium Blue Eddy for Its Flowers and Foliage

allium blue eddyVirtues: Allium Blue Eddy is a clumping allium that provides fun, rounded purple flower heads in late summer. These are attractive to bees and butterflies. However, unlike bulbous alliums, Blue Eddy offers prolonged interest from spring to fall with its textural foliage, reminiscent of a swirl of water or seaweed in a tide pool. This attribute as well as Allium Blue Eddy’s short stature and durability make it a great choice for edging the front of the border or filler for large mixed containers or the rock garden. This allium is not known to reseed.

Common name: Allium Blue Eddy, ‘Blue Eddy’ allium, ‘Blue Eddy’ ornamental onion

Botanical name: Allium senescens ‘Blue Eddy’

Exposure: Full sun to part shade

Season: Spring to fall for foliage, late summer for flowers

Flowers: Allium Blue Eddy blooms in late summer into autumn, with one- to two-inch-round heads made of tiny individual flowers. Their color is a medium lilac purple. These flowers appear in profusion, each one atop its own straight stem that rises above the plant’s swirl of leaves.

Foliage and habit: Blue Eddy is a clumping allium that forms a thick tuft of foliage 8 to 12 inches tall and wide. The individual leaves have a bluish green color and the shape of a flattened shoelace. The fairly stiff leaves have a curve to them, giving Allium Blue Eddy the overall look of a swirling pool of water, hence its varietal name.

Origins: This allium was bred by allium expert Mark McDonough and introduced by Walters Gardens. Its parent is the blue-tinged Allium senescens var. glaucum, or German garlic.

How to grow Allium Blue Eddy: Site this clumping ornamental onion in full sun or part shade, in average soil with good drainage. Once it is established, it can tolerate some drought. It can be planted in spring or fall; Blue Eddy is sold as a potted plant, not a dormant bulb. Like other clumping alliums, ‘Blue Eddy’ can be divided in spring. Leave seedbeds and foliage standing in fall and remove them in spring to make way for new growth. USDA Zones 4–8.

Image courtesy of Walters Gardens.

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