Allium tuberosum Rottler ex Spreng.
CC = *
CW = 5
MOC = 3
Family - Liliaceae
Habit - Perennial forb from a bulb, strongly colonial, strongly aromatic when bruised.
Stem - Aerial stems erect, to 60 cm, scapose, solid, terete, arising from bulb. Bulb brown, fibrous.
Leaves - Alternate, crowded near base of stem, strap-shaped, flattened, solid, entire, glabrous.
Inflorescence - Umbels with 20-50 flowers, hemispheric to flat-topped.
Flowers - Actinomorphic, to 1 cm diameter, on stalks 1-3 cm. Perianth consisting of 3 petals and 3 sepals, these morphologically similar, spreading, white. Stamens 6, included. Ovary superior, 3-lobed, 3-locular, usually with 2 ovules per locule. Style linear, with unlobed capitate stigma.
Fruits - 3-Locular capsules. Seeds shiny, irregular in shape, black.
Flowering - August - September.
Habitat - Disturbed areas, sun to partial shade.
Origin - Native to China.
Lookalikes - None close.
Other info. - This species is uncommon, only sporadically escaping cultivation. Large patches can be quite showy. In Missouri it is not truly naturalized, as populations do not seem to persist. The plant is edible, with a flavor similar to garlic, and it is frequently used in Asian cuisines.
Photographs taken at Young Conservation Area, Jefferson County, MO, 8-30-2016; also along Katy Trail west of Augusta, St. Charles County, MO, 9-20-2017 (SRTurner).