Allium 'Sugar Melt'
Common Name: ornamental onion
Type: Bulb
Family: Amaryllidaceae
Zone: 5 to 8
Height: 0.50 to 1.50 feet
Spread: 0.50 to 1.50 feet
Bloom Time: July to September
Bloom Description: Pink
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Low
Suggested Use: Naturalize
Flower: Showy, Fragrant
Leaf: Fragrant
Attracts: Butterflies
Tolerate: Deer, Drought, Black Walnut

Culture

Easily grown in average, dry to medium moisture, well-drained soils in full sun to part shade. Best in full sun, but appreciates some light afternoon shade in hot summer climates. Tolerates a wide range of soils. Performs well in sandy soils. Add sand to clay soils as needed to improve drainage. Bulbs are best planted in fall.

Plants form dense, slowly-spreading clumps which may be divided in either spring or autumn. Deadhead flowers before seed sets to help control any unwanted spread.

Noteworthy Characteristics

The genus Allium contains over 700 species of bulbous or rhizomatous plants. All possess oniony smelling flowers and foliage. Some species are grown for culinary purposes and others for ornamental purposes. Plants typically produce showy flower umbels on naked scapes rising above a clump of linear grass-like leaves. Ornamental alliums generally range in height from 3” to 4-6’ tall.

Genus name comes from the classical Latin name for garlic.

'Sugar Melt' is a rhizomatous, bulbous perennial that typically forms a basal clump of linear, grass-like, somewhat twisted, narrow green leaves to 6” tall. Pink florets appear in globular clusters (umbels) atop leafless stalks rising above the foliage to 12-16” tall in summer (July-September). Flowers are mildly fragrant. All parts of the plant have an oniony aroma when cut or bruised.

Problems

No serious insect or disease problems. Bulb rot may occur in overly moist soils. Watch for mildew, rust and leaf spots. Thrips are an occasional problem.

Plants may colonize over time, but are not considered to be as aggressive as some of the other alliums.

Garden Uses

Rock gardens, border fronts, herb gardens. Good edging plant for gardens or paths.