Alpine Leek
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Alpine Leek
ative Photo: Krishan Lal
Common name: Alpine Leek, Victory onion • Hindi: Pangari
Botanical name: Allium victorialis    Family: Amaryllidaceae (Nargis family)
Synonyms: Cepa victorialis, Allium plantagineum, Allium anguinum

Alpine Leek is interesting onion-like plant, with cylindrical bulb 4-6 cm long, coat net-veined, fibrous. Leaves are 3-6, stalked, broadly lanceshaped to elliptic, 10-20 cm long, 4-6 cm broad, shorter than the flowering stem. Flowers are borne in an umbel, atop a long leafless stem. Flower-stalks are 1-2 cm long. Tepals are white to yellow-white, 5 mm long, oblong, pointed to blunt. Filaments are longer than the tepals, entire, outer narrower, subulate, inner broader, lanceshaped. Style is protruding. Seeds are almost spherical. Bulb is eaten raw or cooked, as sn onion substitute. The plants are as pungent as garlic. The bulbs are rather small, about 1-2 cm in diameter, and are produced in clusters on a short rhizome. Leaves are eaten raw or cooked. The stems and leaves are eaten, they are much favoured in Japan. Flowers are eaten raw or cooked. The juice of the plant is used as a moth repellent. The whole plant is said to repel insects and moles. Alpine Leek is found in the Himalayas, C. Asia and E. Asia, at altitudes of 600-2500 m. Flowering: June-August.
Medicinal uses: The root is antiscorbutic, carminative, diuretic and vermifuge. Used in the treatment of profuse menstruation.

Identification credit: Krishan Lal Photographed in Sirmaur Distt, Himachal Pradesh

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