Messages posted to thread:

From:Date:Zone:
nicky24-Mar-03 07:35 PM EST 6b   
Susan24-Mar-03 09:07 PM EST 6a   
PatA25-Mar-03 01:44 PM EST 3a   
nicky25-Mar-03 11:13 PM EST 6b   
Susan26-Mar-03 07:18 AM EST 6a   
Nicky26-Mar-03 11:46 AM EST 6b   


Subject: Edible Alliums
From: nicky
Zone: 6b
Date: 24-Mar-03 07:35 PM EST

Please can anyone tell me if the ornamental alliums are edible? Can I eat Allium moly(yellow flowers)? I use thereg. and garlic chives in salads and the moly would look nice. Are there others I am not aware of? Thanks. Nicky.


Subject: RE: Edible Alliums
From: Susan
Zone: 6a
Date: 24-Mar-03 09:07 PM EST

As far as I'm aware, alliums are not poisonous - several common alliums are listed on the Ag. Canada Poisonous Plants Information System - see:

http://sis.agr.gc.ca/pls/pp/poison?p_x=pxppcommo2.html

as they can cause problems for some livestock and some people have allergies to them. The flowers and seeds of even things like chives are quite strong and should be used in moderation. I have a friend who experiences very strong gastric upset if she eats any onions or garlic so I'm always conscious of the possibility of adverse reaction to alliums.


Subject: RE: Edible Alliums
From: PatA
Zone: 3a
Date: 25-Mar-03 01:44 PM EST

Nicky, here is another web site with extensive allium information.http://www.comp.leeds.ac.uk/pfaf/onions.html As they say 'in THEORY all alliums are edible' Just be cautious until you know how you will react, or even if you like it.

If you are interested in other edible flowers, I teach a course on this. A few of my suggestions are: PANSY (Viola wittrockiana)NASTURTIUM (Tropaeolum majus), TUBEROUS BEGONIA (Begonia x tuberhybrida), ROSE (All petals are edible some are nicer than others),BACHELOR'S BUTTONS (Centaurea cyanus), LILACS, LAVENDER, ZUCCHINI blossoms(before they open is best) CALENDULA, PINKS (Dianthus carophyllus), SWEET VIOLET (viola odorata), DAYLILY (Hemerocallis spp) (DO NOT TRY OTHER LILIES), BEEBALM (Monarda didyma), AND... most herb flowers are edible but can be bitter.

Pick when young and still soft. Try fresh from the garden first. Odds are if you don't like it when sampling in the garden you probably won't change your opinion when you use it in a receipe! Always properly identify what you are eating and ensure it has not been sprayed with a pesticide.

Oh yeah the neatest thing when serving flowers is the reaction you get from cautious first-timers. Have your camera ready!PatA


Subject: RE: Edible Alliums
From: nicky
Zone: 6b
Date: 25-Mar-03 11:13 PM EST

Susan,PatA...There seems to be a lot of controversy as to edible or not(reading mags.) Iused the chive flowers in a salad one day(no onions) and everyone liked it.I have to replant them as the chives died(never had this happen in all my gardening days!hence the allium moly idea.


Subject: RE: Edible Alliums
From: Susan
Zone: 6a
Date: 26-Mar-03 07:18 AM EST

Nicky - I, too, have used chive flowers ornamentally in cooking - but not when my allergic friend is coming to dinner! (It's very hard to cook for her as I normally use LOTS of onions and garlic...!) My point is really that I think most alliums are edible but be aware that some people are highly sensitive to them and, if the edible nature of the specific allium is unknown, there may be a greater risk of sensitivity as the strength of the component that people are allergic to is unknown. My friend ended up in the hospital once in Tokyo on a business trip when she ate something that was unfamiliar to her and contained some allium product. So my advice is to proceed with caution....


Subject: RE: Edible Alliums
From: Nicky
Zone: 6b
Date: 26-Mar-03 11:46 AM EST

Thanks PatA & Susan,my questions are pretty well answered.I'm going to use the chive blossoms in my salads & I'll try the moly,but I wont force it in my guests,unless I know they are not allergic. Susan,I use alot of Onions& garlic too and piles of my fav.salad add. (parsley)


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