Allium chinense

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Chinese onion
Allium chinense1.jpg
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Monocots
Order: Asparagales
Family: Amaryllidaceae
Subfamily: Allioideae
Genus: Allium
Species: A. chinense
Binomial name
Allium chinense

Allium chinense (also known as Chinese onion,[2][3] Chinese scallion,[2] glittering chive,[4] Japanese scallion,[2] Kiangsi scallion,[3] and Oriental onion[2]) is an edible species of Allium, native to China and Korea, and cultivated in many other countries.[5] Its close relatives include the onion, shallot, leek, chive, and garlic.[6]


Allium chinense is native to China (in Anhui, Fujian, Guangdong, Guangxi, Guizhou, Hainan, Henan, Hubei, Hunan, Jiangxi, and Zhejiang provinces) plus in areas where it is also deliberately planted. It is naturalized in other parts of Asia as well as in North America.[2][7][8]



Owing to its very mild and "fresh" taste A. chinense is often pickled and served as a side dish in Japan and Vietnam, to balance the stronger flavor of some other component in a meal. For example, in Japanese cuisine it is eaten with Japanese curry as a garnish.[9]

In Vietnam, pickled A. chinense is often served during Tết (Vietnamese New Year).[citation needed]


Allium chinense is used as a folk medicine in tonics to help the intestines, and as a stomachic.[10]

Names in other languages[edit]

Names in other languages include: in Japanese, ラッキョウ (rakkyō), also written as 辣韮, 辣韭, or ; in Chinese, Simplified/Traditional: 薤/薤 (xiè) or 藠头/藠頭 (jiào tóu); in Vietnamese, củ kiệu.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Allium chinense". World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Retrieved 2013-05-28.
  2. ^ a b c d e "Allium chinense". Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN). Agricultural Research Service (ARS), United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). Retrieved 2017-12-15.
  3. ^ a b Multilingual Multiscript Plant Name Database: Allium. University of Melbourne. Updated 3 August 2013. Retrieved 5 September 2014.
  4. ^ English Names for Korean Native Plants (PDF). Pocheon: Korea National Arboretum. 2015. p. 347. ISBN 978-89-97450-98-5. Archived from the original (PDF) on 25 May 2017. Retrieved 17 December 2016 – via Korea Forest Service.
  5. ^ Flora of China Vol. 24 Page 196 藠头 jiao tou Allium chinense G. Don, Mem. Wern. Nat. Hist. Soc. 6: 83. 1827.
  6. ^ Block, E. (2010). Garlic and Other Alliums: The Lore and the Science. Royal Society of Chemistry. ISBN 0-85404-190-7.
  7. ^ Plants For A Future: Allium chinense
  8. ^ United States Department of Agriculture Plants Profile: Allium chinense
  9. ^
  10. ^ James A. Duke. "Allium chinense (LILIACEAE)". Dr. Duke's Phytochemical and Ethnobotanical Databases. Retrieved 2017-12-15.

External links[edit]

Media related to Allium chinense at Wikimedia Commons