Allium altaicum

Today this individual of altai onion is the beauty queen. Altai onion is the original species of welsh onion Alliun fistulosum, growing wild in the altai mountains and across to the lake bajkal. Being same species in wild and domesticated form, they cross freely, producing fertile offsprings. Both also cross happily with the ordinary cepa onion, but the offspring of this constallation will normally be infertile. These crosses can be propagated vegetatively.

Allium altaicum

Altai onion has a major genetic variation, also expressed in the color of the leave protecting the young flowers. Altai onion are of a broad growth habit compared to welsh onion. Nice in the garden, but not accepted in a commercial production. It is consumed in the same way as welsh onion. It appears at least 14 days ahead of chives, making it a welcomed crop. My altai onion comes from seeds send me by mr. Smetana i Slovakia back in 2004.

Welsh onion Allium fistulosum from scandinavia

This welsh onion I purchased at Tirups Örtagård many years ago. I grows erect. Contrary to the japanese varieties it survives harsh winters, as could be expected from an onion originating in altai mountains.

Welsh onion Allium fistulosum from datcha in Irkutsk, Sibiria

The welsh onion from Irkutsk is clearly a morfologic in the middle between altai onion and the welsh onion from scandinavia. It is variable and very hardy, tolerating at least -40C. To be expected from a welsh onion originating in same region as its wild counterpart.