Crow Garlic (Allium vineale)

Common Name Latin Name Plant Family
Crow Garlic
Allium vineale
Alliaceae

The juice of the plant is used as a moth repellent. The whole plant is said to repel insects and moles[20]. The juice of the plant can be rubbed on exposed parts of the body to repel biting insects, scorpions etc[257].

  • Medicinal Use

    The whole plant is antiasthmatic, blood purifier, carminative, cathartic, diuretic, expectorant, hypotensive, stimulant and vasodilator[20, 257]. A tincture is used to prevent worms and colic in children, and also as a remedy for croup[257]. The raw root can be eaten to reduce blood pressure and also to ease shortness of breath[257].

    Although no other specific mention of medicinal uses has been seen for this species, members of this genus are in general very healthy additions to the diet. They contain sulphur compounds (which give them their onion flavour) and when added to the diet on a regular basis they help reduce blood cholesterol levels, act as a tonic to the digestive system and also tonify the circulatory system[K].

  • Edible Use

    Leaves – raw or cooked[5, 177]. Rather stringy, they are used as a garlic substitute[2, 12, K]. The leaves are available from late autumn until the following summer, when used sparingly they make a nice addition to the salad bowl[8, 183, K].

    Bulb – used as a flavouring[105, 161, 177]. Rather small, with a very strong flavour and odour[183]. The bulbs are 10 – 20mm in diameter[200].

    Bulbils – raw or cooked. Rather small and fiddly, they have a strong garlic-like flavour[K].

  • Cautionary Notes

    There have been cases of poisoning caused by the consumption, in large quantities and by some mammals, of this species. Dogs seem to be particularly susceptible[76].

Cultivation & Habitat

Plants do not need any encouragement, they are more than capable of propagating themselves. Bulbils are produced in abundance in the summer and are the main means by which the plant spreads.
Prefers a sunny position in a light well-drained soil[1]. The bulbs should be planted fairly deeply[1]. Grows well with most plants, especially roses, carrots, beet and chamomile, but it inhibits the growth of legumes[18, 20, 54]. This plant is a bad companion for alfalfa, each species negatively affecting the other[201]. This species is a pernicious weed of grassland in Britain[1], spreading freely by means of its bulbils[203]. Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer[233].
Much of Europe, including Britain, to N. Africa and Lebanon.

Become ungovernable, break the chains of the matrix; grow and forage your own food and medicine.

*None of the information on this website qualifies as professional medical advice. Take only what resonates with your heart and use your own personal responsibility for what’s best for you. For more information [brackets] [000], see bibliography.