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Wild Onions

Wild Onions
Allium canadense
Liliaceae (Lily family)
There are several varieties of wild onions. They are biennial or perennial herbs with strong-scented (odor of garlic/onion). They have underground bulbs and long narrow leaves. Flowers are arranged in a terminal cluster atop an unbranched stalk 6 to 20 inches. Flowers are usual white but can be yellow, pink, red or purple. Wild garlic , a similar plant, (Allium vineale) also called field garlic and crow garlic can also be a pest of lawn or garden.  Both are common weeds in lawns. The easiest way to tell them apart is by their leaves. Wild garlic has hollow leaves and wild onion has solid flat leaves. Wild onion is a bulbous herb and is a close relative of cultivated onion (Allium cepa). It has a distinct onion odor. It has slender grass-like leaves and reaches about 2 feet in height when flowers appear in late summer. Leaves are narrow, long arising from the small underground bulb. When you pull wild onions, they will have an outer skin that is kind of like a fibrous netting over the bulb.
Wild onions are widely distributed across the United States and are found during the spring in virtually every soil type.
Onions contain N-propyl disulfide can destroy red blood cells. Cultivated onions contain the same mild toxin. Cattle and horses are susceptible to onion poisoning, and cats are very sensitive to it. Sheep are more resistant, but have been poisoned by onions in some instances. A lot has to eaten to be toxic at all.
I have had luck and others have reported success killing them with kindness. Mow, clip or pull as often as you can and apply a heavier than normal application of molasses. Use about 10 lbs. per 1000 sq. ft. and repeat in two weeks. The mixed products that contain molasses, cornmeal and wheat bran will also help. The idea here is to stimulate a furious level of biological activity aimed at rotting the crowns of the undesired plants. Crow poison looks almost the same and is mildly toxic.  Wild onion has a strong onion fragrance when crushed; crow poison does not. Control with soil improvement and organic herbicides.

DISCLAIMER: Don’t eat edible wild plants based on what you see in a book or here on the Internet. Have a qualified instructor show you the plants and don't eat them until the instructor shows you how to prepare them. Know that you may be allergic to a plant that someone else can eat without any problem. And of course avoid plant that may have been sprayed with pesticides.

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