Allium nutans L. is a Siberian species that is highly variable with both superior and inferior forms. The one shown here is remarkable on account of the extra wide and thick gray leaves that spirally twist into impressive mounds. The first photo shows the plant in spring with the pirouetting rosettes of foliage, the second shows the massive muscular leaf rosettes in June, the third shows the nodding and twisting flower stems, and the last shows the typical flower form, dense floral globes that look fuzzy on account of the protruding stamens. Flower color can be found in all shades of rose, lilac, pink, to white. It is also one of the parents of Allium 'Sugar Melt'. Photos by Mark McDonough.
Several named selections are also available. Following are a few grown and photographed by Wietse Mellema, a bulb farmer from the Netherlands. The first is Allium nutans 'Caroline', a silver medal winning selection from the hands of P. de Jong. Early in the spring to develop the twisted light gray, 30 cm long leaves that remain into autumn. The flower buds have a nodding head, but in late June they turn up and open to lilac pink flowers. The second is Allium nutans 'Esmee' with flowers that are slightly larger and darker than those of 'Caroline' and leaves not twisted. The third is Allium nutans 'Isabelle', a white flowered form, sometimes blushing pink. Smaller in all respects to 'Caroline'.
"selected hybrid, finger-leaf, large pale flower globes" - Here's a hybrid that has finger-like leaves that build up into attractive mounds, and a prolific display of large pale lavender globes in August. The are four photos in a progression of growth. Photos by Mark McDonough.