I planted two types of allium bulbs in my raised garden last fall (zone 5b). All of the nine Purple Sensation Alliums have emerged (about 3 weeks ago in April), but none of the Red Mohican Alliums which were planted between the groups of Purple Sensations have emerged. The package says that they are supposed to flower in May & June. Can this variety of allium be extra late or do you think that these four Red Mohicans are all duds?
Also, would it be safe to plant a perennial where these bulbs should have emerged from or should I continue to wait?
Thanks for any help as I am inexperienced with bulbs.
Thank-you for posing your question about ‘Red Mohican’ allium to Toronto Master Gardeners.
This allium is a beautiful and interesting decorative onion selection. What a pity if it has died out.
It is difficult to determine why the ‘Red Mohican’ allium bulbs failed to grow. All sources consulted agree that alliums are usually reliable performers in the garden, and not particularly fussy bulbs. They should be planted at about twice the depth of the bulb height, pointed end up. Most soil types will work for alliums. All sources agree, however, that they need full sun and well drained soils to thrive. Wet soils can actually cause the bulbs to rot, especially during their dormant season. White onion rot (which also affect culinary onions) can sometimes occur. Organic matter added into the planting hole can help provide drainage. Given the very wet winter and spring we have had this year, it is possible that the ‘Red Mohican’ bulbs have rotted.
The cold spring we have had in Toronto this year may have delayed the bulbs from emerging. It could be worthwhile to delay any action for another few weeks to be sure they aren’t just late emerging. If they do not show, by all means dig the bulbs up and go ahead with another plant in the space left vacant.
More information on allium planting can be found at these websites: