November 28, 2018

Wild Onion

Latin Name: Allium

In same genus as garlics, chives, leeks, shallots and domestic onions. Wild onion looks a lot like the green onions that you can find in grocery stores. It blends in with tall grass-like plants with its leafless flower stalk. They are typically between 6 and 12 inches tall and have a noticeable hook of the stalk at the top.

WARNING: Watch out for lookalikes smooth camas and death camas (toxic). Crush the leaf: If it doesn’t smell like an onion, it’s not an onion!

LEAVES
Long, grass-like leaves growing from the bulb but not on the stalk. They emit a strong onion scent when crushed.

FLOWERS
The clustered flowers are tiny, white to pink flowers less than 1 cm in diameter. They have six perianth segments.

CONSUMPTION
As one would expect, wild onions can be used in place of any onion to enhance the flavour of any dish. Before eating, be sure to remove the fibrous outer layers. The bulb and leaves can be eaten.

WHERE TO FIND
They can be found at sandy streamsides, in deserts, fields and montane regions.

This article was posted in Wild Plants & Edibles and tagged: alberta edible flower forage plant wild