This native to France and Italy, is a close relative of the alliums, and the flower, the seed head and the leaves each make a valuable contribution in the garden. The leaves are triangular in cross section, twisting as they rise, and have the typical allium smell of onions. The sturdy stems rising to about 20 - 30" (50 - 75cm) carry clusters of 10 to 30 thimble-sized, waxy bell-shaped flowers branching out from a central point. They are cream with burgundy pink markings, flushed green at the base on the outside and a bit darker inside. When flowering ends the seed heads point themselves skywards again, and look wonderful both in the border and when cut for arrangements. It grows easily in well-drained soil, and will tolerate part shade, but it does not like too much competition.
Plant the bulbs point up about 4" (10cm) deep and 3-4" (8-10cm) apart in sun or part shade, in amongst other plants that are in leaf in the late spring. Best in lighter soils where they can seed about.