We show new and old varieties of chives, which differ in terms of yield, height, taste, and tube thickness.
Chives ( Allium schoenoprasum ) is one of the most popular culinary herbs and belongs to the Amaryllis family (Amaryllidaceae). The different types of chives differ mainly in height, taste, and tube size. If you are wondering where the herbaceous plant once came from or how to harvest and propagate it correctly, read our fact sheet about chives.
Small varieties of chives
Small chives varieties are usually particularly suitable for growing them in pots or balcony boxes. There are a large number of different small-stature varieties. We have summarized a few for you below:
- ‘Miro’: A popular and widespread variety due to its fine aroma, which is mainly used as a culinary herb. The chives ‘Miro’ have fine tubes and, at 20 to 30 cm, grow smaller than other varieties, but very quickly.
- ‘Twiggy’: A fine-tubed, yet robust and fast-growing variety. ‘Twiggy’ is the most common short-stature variety available in the garden center. The strong, dark green tubes grow between 20 and 30 cm high, but are difficult to store and should therefore be eaten fresh.
- ‘Forescate’: The coarse tubes of the ‘Forescate’ chives are particularly suitable as a decoration for dishes and, thanks to their rapid growth, provide high yields. The variety is only about 25 to 35 cm high and forms strong, pink to burgundy-red flowers and turquoise leaves. The plant is also a popular ornament for flower beds.
- ‘Middleman’: A very fine-tube, dull green variety with extremely fast growth. It has a pleasantly aromatic and spicy taste and is very suitable for cultivation in a pot or balcony box. The ‘Middleman’ chives reach heights of around 20 to 30 cm.
- ‘Erba Cipollina’: A classic Italian variety that is often used as a culinary herb there because of its intense aroma. It is not hardy and should therefore only be cultivated as an annual. The fine-tube leaves are broad and intensely dark green. ‘Erba Cipollina’ only grows around 10 to 15 cm tall and is therefore particularly suitable as a pot plant.
- ‘Star: A large-tube, common chive with 20 to 30 cm high growth, which is very well suited for outdoor cultivation due to its strong root growth. The thick, sturdy stalks formed by the ‘Star chives can be frozen very easily and thus made durable.
- ‘Elbe’: Because of its robust growth and high yields, it is one of the most popular varieties in our latitudes and forms coarse, approx. 20 to 25 cm long tubes. The white flowers of the ‘Elbe’ chives have a high ornamental value before they bloom for the first time because of their pink bracts and are ideal as a decoration for all kinds of dishes.
Large varieties of chives
Large chive varieties are well suited for outdoor cultivation, as they are usually more robust than small ones. Some can also be grown in pots without any problems. We would like to introduce you to a few of the numerous large varieties of chives:
- ‘Polyvit’: A fine-tube variety that can grow up to 40 cm high. The delicate, vigorous stalks are dark green in color and have a spicy taste. ‘Polyvit’ is suitable for growing in pots and can be easily stored by freezing after harvest.
- ‘Schmitt’: The ‘Schmitt’ variety is characterized by a special, very own spicy note. The medium-sized tubes grow up to 60 cm high under good conditions and form strong purple flowers. ‘Schmitt’ can easily be grown in pots, as the plant regenerates quickly after harvest.
- ‘Grolau’: This newly bred variety from Switzerland is characterized by its coarse, broad, dark green leaves. It is more drought-tolerant and turns yellow less often than other varieties. The chives ‘Grolau’ grow up to 40 cm high. The fast-growing and high-yielding plant flowers white and can be grown well in pots or balcony boxes.
- ‘Profusion’: ‘Profusion’ is a special variety because the purple to pink flowers does not form seeds. This makes them tender for a particularly long time and makes them easy to use in the kitchen. The lush flowers are ripe early in the year and can be used. Due to the lack of seeds, propagation is only possible through the onions. The ‘Profusion’ chives are a fast-growing variety and, with their up to 40 cm long, coarse tubes, deliver high yields.
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