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Allium tricoccum - Aiton.

Common Name Wood Leek, Ramp
Family Alliaceae
USDA hardiness 5-9
Known Hazards Although no individual reports regarding this species have been seen, there have been cases of poisoning caused by the consumption, in very large quantities and by some mammals, of certain members of this genus. Dogs seem to be particularly susceptible[76].
Habitats Rich woods and bottoms, preferring slopes and streamsides[43]. Usually in beech and maple woods[159].
Range Eastern N. America - Quebec, south to Virginia and Iowa.
Edibility Rating    (4 of 5)
Other Uses    (3 of 5)
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating    (2 of 5)
Care (info)
Fully Hardy Moist Soil Semi-shade
Allium tricoccum Wood Leek,  Ramp

Allium tricoccum Wood Leek,  Ramp


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Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of bulb
Allium tricoccum is a BULB growing to 0.3 m (1ft) by 0.2 m (0ft 8in).
See above for USDA hardiness. It is hardy to UK zone 6 and is not frost tender. It is in leaf from March to June, in flower from June to July. The species is hermaphrodite (has both male and female organs) and is pollinated by Bees, insects.
Suitable for: light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: mildly acid, neutral and basic (mildly alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland). It prefers moist soil.

UK Hardiness Map US Hardiness Map


Plant Habitats

Woodland Garden Dappled Shade; Cultivated Beds;

Edible Uses

Edible Parts: Flowers  Leaves  Root
Edible Uses:

Bulb - raw or cooked[46, 61, 159]. An early Spring vegetables. Used mainly as a flavouring in salads and savoury dishes[238]. This is one of the best N. American wild species for sweetness and flavour[95]. A mild sweet flavour, resembling leeks[183]. The bulb is rather small, it is up to 12mm wide and 50mm tall[235] and is produced in clusters on a rhizome[200]. Leaves - raw or cooked[62]. The unfolding leaves in spring have a mild sweet flavour, resembling leeks[183]. Flowers - raw. Used as a garnish on salads. A hot onion flavour[K].

References   More on Edible Uses

Medicinal Uses

Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.

This species probably has most of the medicinal virtues of garlic (Allium sativum) but in a milder form[222, 238]. Traditionally the leaves were used in the treatment of colds and croup, and also as a spring tonic[222, 238]. The warm juice of the leaves and bulb was used externally in the treatment of earaches[222, 238]. A strong decoction of the root is emetic[222].

References   More on Medicinal Uses

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Other Uses

Companion  Repellent

The juice of the plant is used as a moth repellent. The whole plant is said to repel insects and moles[20]. A good shade plant. Tolerates Juglone (a substance produced by a plant to stunt the growth of another plant).

Special Uses

Food Forest

References   More on Other Uses

Cultivation details

Prefers a sunny position in a light well-drained soil[1]. Grows well in light moist woodland, where the plant forms large clumps and can become invasive[203, 235]. It is probably best grown in the wild garden[203]. Plants are hardy to at least -15°c[238]. The bulbs should be planted fairly deeply[1]. The leaves die down in early summer before the flowers have fully opened. 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]. Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer[233]. For polyculture design as well as the above-ground architecture (form - tree, shrub etc. and size shown above) information on the habit and root pattern is also useful and given here if available. The plant growth habit is a clumper with limited spread [1-2]. Ephemeral emerging in spring and dying back by summer every year [1-2]. The root pattern is a bulb.

References   Carbon Farming Information and Carbon Sequestration Information

Temperature Converter

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Plant Propagation

Seed - sow spring in a cold frame. The seed usually germinates within 12 months, but only makes a root and a small bulb in its first year of growth. Top growth is not produced until the second spring[K]. It is quite possible that if the seed can be sown when it is ripe in early summer, or in the autumn, then this will speed up germination times[K]. Sow the seed thinly in the pots so that the young seedlings can be allowed to grow on undisturbed for their first two years. Apply a liquid feed once a month during the growing season to ensure they do not suffer from mineral deficiency. When the plants are dormant at the end of their second years growth, divide them so that there are 2 - 3 small bulbs in each pot. Grow them on for a further year in the greenhouse and then plant them out when they are dormant. Division in spring. Very easy, the divisions can be planted straight out into their permanent positions if required.

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Wild Leek, Wood Leek, Ramp.

Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status :

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Latin NameCommon NameHabitHeightHardinessGrowthSoilShadeMoistureEdibleMedicinalOther
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Growth: S = slow M = medium F = fast. Soil: L = light (sandy) M = medium H = heavy (clay). pH: A = acid N = neutral B = basic (alkaline). Shade: F = full shade S = semi-shade N = no shade. Moisture: D = dry M = Moist We = wet Wa = water.


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Botanical References


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Readers comment

John H. McKinney   Tue Apr 17 12:56:13 2001

Recently I discovered the data base PFAF. I have been trying to find a data base on plants for some time without success. Although I am trying to learn all I can on Alliums I am at the present time concentrating on Allium tricoccum and its varieties.

Your data base lists the species as a hermaphrodite plant. This would indicate that the plant can only be Propagated by seed only. I know that this plant can be propagated by bulbs or cloves as well. Each matured plant will produce at least 3 cloves or bulbs. I also have been told that propagation can also be accomplished by just planting the roots. (This I have yet to try.)

Since there are at least two recognized species of Allium tricoccum and the plant can be propagated by seeds, it is possible to have several varieties. This is based on the fact that since the plant can be propagated by bulbs, this method would product the true species. Propagation by seed could and would produce varieties. Nothing can be found to verify this. Since this plant can be propagated by bulbs, would this change or make a difference in the superdivision?

Also you data base shows a photo of Allium kochii but a write up is missing. Did find where I believe this species is a var of Allium vineale. This is also a puzzlement as most books only indicate that the crow garlic is only Allium vineale. The data base also shows a photo of Allium navadense but no write up. Is there a complete listing and description of the Allium species. If so where would one find it?

As a whole I have found the data base very informative and believe it will be a useful tool.

Any additional information that you can supply me on the Allium species would be deeply appreciated.

chandler   Sun Apr 6 2008

when would the allium tricoccum reach its most pungent strength during the growing season?

Robert Gergulics   Tue Apr 21 2009

Photos Here :Photorobg.com

www.photorobg.com Wild Leeks, Ramps (Allium Tricoccum)

Robert Gergulics   Mon Apr 27 2009

Pictures Here: Photorobg.com


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