Keeled Garlic

The keeled garlic is an onion plant that grows mainly in central and southern Europe. The pink to purple flowers emerge from green breeding bulbs and sit on small stems. This very rare plant is protected and must not be collected. The medicinal properties are similar to those of chives and onions.

Plant description

The keeled garlic is native to southern Germany and southern Europe. It prefers to grow on nutrient-poor grassland and moor meadows. The perennial plant grows between 30 and 60 centimetres high. The leaves are 3 mm wide, keeled and linear. The pink to purple flowers appear between June and August. The bulbs at the base of the flower umbels are green. In rare cases the seeds develop from the usually infertile flowers.


Scientific name
Allium carinatum.

Plant family

Other name
Witch’s garlic.

Used plant parts
Bulb & Leave.

Essential oils, alliin, cycloalliin, flavonoids, propenylalliin, sterols.

Harvest period

Medicinal properties

Main use: Digestion.

Healing effects

        • Appetising
        • Blood lipid-lowering
        • Anti-inflammatory
        • Diuretic
        • Digestive

Application method

        • Orally

Forms of preparation

Keeled garlic can be used like young onions and chives. For example, you can make a salad. Cut into small pieces and served with vegetables promotes digestion and stimulates the appetite.


It was used as a substitute for leeks and bulbs, but has never acquired a special significance as a medicinal plant. The extract was used as a remedy against moths. It is now found in nature and wild gardens as an ornamental plant.

Cultivation Tips

In autumn or spring, place the bulbs sufficiently deep in the ground. The keel leek does not tolerate stagnant moisture and is best planted alone, as it is not compatible with many other plants.


Allium_carinatum (Wikipedia)

Allium carinatum
Allium carinatum Sturm38.jpg
Allium carinatum
Scientific classification edit
A. carinatum
Binomial name
Allium carinatum
Species synonymy
  • Aglitheis carinata (L.) Raf.
    • Allium asperum G.Don
    • Allium calcareum Reut.
    • Allium consimile Jord. ex Gren. & Godr.
    • Allium denticulatum Kit.
    • Allium flexifolium Jord. ex Gren. & Godr.
    • Allium flexum Waldst. & Kit.
    • Allium flexuosum Host 1827, illegitimate homonym not d'Urv. 1822 (syn of A. staticiforme)
    • Allium foetidum Willd.
    • Allium monserratense Pourr. ex Willk. & Lange
    • Allium montenegrinum Beck & Szyszyl.
    • Allium pratense Schleich. ex Kunth.
    • Allium purpureum Schur
    • Allium violaceum Willd.
    • Cepa carinata (L.) Bernh.
    • Codonoprasum carinatum (L.) Rchb.
    • Codonoprasum consimile (Jord. ex Gren. & Godr.) Fourr.
    • Codonoprasum flexifolium (Jord. ex Gren. & Godr.) Fourr.
    • Raphione carinata (L.) Salisb.

Allium carinatum, the keeled garlic or witch's garlic, is a bulbous perennial flowering plant in the family Amaryllidaceae. It is widespread across central and southern Europe, with some populations in Asiatic Turkey. It is cultivated in many places as an ornamental and also for its potently aromatic bulbs used as a food flavoring.


Numerous botanical names have been coined within the species at the varietal level, but only two are recognized:

  • Allium carinatum subsp. carinatum - most of species range
  • Allium carinatum subsp. pulchellum (G.Don) Bonnier & Layens - central Europe + Balkans
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