Allium vineale L.
May be confused with the following native and/or non-native species.
Landscape Alternatives lists native horticultural substitutes
The flowering stems of Field Garlic may attain a height of 3 feet (1 m), but are often shorter in stature.
Main flowering stems are solitary and green, erect at flowering and unbranched, rising from an underground bulb 0.4 to 0.8 inch (1-2 cm) in diameter.
Leaves usually arise from the base or lower half of the stem. The leaves are up to 12 inches (30 cm) long, tubular, hollow and linear with a waxy texture. Leaves arise from a greenish-white sheath on the stem and smell strongly of garlic when crushed.
Both sepals and petals are present, about 0.2 inch (3-5 mm) long in a round terminal cluster. Petals are purplish to pink in color in late spring to midsummer. Some or all of the flowers are replaced by bulblets which may be shed into the surrounding soil.
Fruits are triangular to 3-lobed and 0.2 inch (3-5 mm) long. Bulblets often develop a green tail about 1 inch (2.5 cm) long.
Photo: Dan Tenaglia, Missouriplants.com, Bugwood.orgMore images of Allium vineale
Field Garlic is in the Amaryllidaceae Family. It grows from an underground bulb. All plant parts smell strongly of garlic. The leaves are slender and hollow, a distinguishing characteristic. It flowers in summer, but some plants produce few to no flowers, only a globular cluster of small bulblets. An agricultural pest plant, the strong garlic odor of Allium vineale
can taint harvested grain as well as meat, milk, and eggs from foraging livestock.
Field Garlic is found in open pastures, waste places, lawns, disturbed native grass lands, and successional forests. It is drought tolerant and can grow in range of soil types. Often found in degraded habitats, it can also invade natural areas.
Origin and Distribution
Field Garlic is native to Europe and Asia but has been widely introduced and naturalized throughout Tennessee. Other states where it is considered a noxious weed: AR, CA, HI.
Foliar Spray Method
Glyphosate is effective on populations where mechanical control measures are not feasible or are impractical. Apply a 2% solution of glyphosate and water plus a non-ionic surfactant using a tank or backpack sprayer to thoroughly cover all leaves. Do not apply so heavily that herbicide drips off the leaf surface. Glyphosate is a non-selective herbicide requiring caution not to spray non-target species. Refer to manufacturerâ€™s label for specific information and restrictions regarding use. Retreatment may be necessary.
Mechanical ControlHand Pulling:
This method is most effective on small populations. Hand pulling can be done throughout the year, but is most effective prior to the development of seeds or bulblets. Flowers, seeds or bulblets should be bagged and disposed of to prevent propagule dispersal. Minimizing soil disturbance will help prevent germination of seeds already present in the soil. Hand pulling must be done carefully to prevent the stem from breaking, leaving the bulb underground and viable.