1. Allium L. (onion)
Plants perennial, with bulbs, with the odor of onion or garlic. Aerial stems unbranched,
erect, sometimes arched or hooked near the tip. Leaves basal or sometimes 2–3
on the lower half of the aerial stems, sometimes absent at flowering time.
Inflorescences at the tips of the aerial stems, umbels, enclosed by a papery to
membranous spathelike sheath that splits into 1–3 bracts at maturity, usually
withering quickly thereafter. Flowers sometimes some or all replaced by
bulblets. Sepals and petals similar in size and shape, free. Stamens 6, free or
fused to the base of the perianth. Style 1, the stigma entire or 3-lobed. Ovary
superior, with 3 locules, each with 1–2 ovules. Fruits globose to ovoid
capsules. Five hundred to 700 species, widespread in the Northern Hemisphere.