Chives

Allium schoenoprasum

Chives grown from seed in a wooden pot

Chives are an attractive and easy to grow herb. A popular culinary herb used in many different cuisines around the world, and a great companion herb.

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Full sun / part shade

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Spring – summer

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Water regularly

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Well drained soils

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Sub-tropical – temperate – cold

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8 weeks from sowing

Growing Chives

Chives are very easy to grow from seed. They thrive in direct sunlight with well drained soils, and can be successfully grown in a wide range of climatic zones from sub-tropical to cold.

Chives are easy to propagate through dividing. Once plants are mature they can be divided but removing clumps and replanting elsewhere. Divide plants in early spring once they’re actively growing. This should be done regularly to avoid overcrowding and keep chives actively growing.

Growing Tips

  • Chives are tolerant of short dry periods, however regular watering is recommended.
  • Avoid planting chives in areas prone to standing water.
  • Wait until frosts have passed before sowing chives in spring.
  • Harvest chives as needed (cut stems close to the base). Regular harvesting will promote new growth.
  • Remove the flower stems as they appear to improve flavor and to keep chives productive.

Chive Varieties

  • Common chives (onion chives)
  • Garlic chives
  • Giant Siberian chives
Some cut chives on a white background

How to Use Chives

Chives have a mild onion-like flavor and can be used in a wide variety of dishes and cuisines. You can add the flowers to salads.

They also make an excellent garden edging plant, especially in vege gardens and orchards.

Chives help to attract pollinators, and also have pest-repelling qualities. This makes them a popular companion herb, especially under fruit trees or planted with tomatoes.

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