Chives are part of the Allium family, which also includes onions and garlic.
Chives are cool-season, cold-tolerant perennials that are planted in early spring. Chives grow about 12 inches tall and will spread about 12 inches across.
The Main Benefits Of Growing Chives:
1. Chives can act as a repellent to bad bugs while encouraging beneficial insects to come visit your garden.
2. Chives are a great companion plant. Plant near roses to repel black spot and to enhance growth. They are also said to repel Japanese beetles, a common pest of roses.
3. The purple blossoms attract pollinators and other insects like bees, butterflies, and beneficial wasps.
4. Chives can increase the length and flavor of carrots when planted close by. They repel aphids from celery, lettuce and peas. Tomatoes benefit as well.
5. You can mix chives and water in a blender with a little bit of dish soap for a repelling spray for most plants and to deter powdery mildew on veggies.
6. Chives have mild diuretic properties and are a wonderful way to detoxify the body. By stimulating urination chives can help get rid of excess toxins, salts, water and even fat.
7. Chives are nutrient-dense, low in calories but high in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. One tablespoon containing 3 grams of chopped chives is only 1 calorie and less than 1 gram of fat.
8. Chives contain choline. Choline is an important nutrient that helps with sleep, muscle movement, learning and memory.
9. Chives contain vitamin K, a nutrient that is important for the bones and helps maintain bone integrity and density.
10. Chives are perennial and have a long growing season.
Three Easy Ways To Grow Chives:
- Purchase plants from your local nursery
- Divide an existing plant by physically separating a clump. Make sure you include bulbs and roots in each clump
- Grow from seed. Plant seeds 1/4 inch deep and final spacing should be 4-6 inches apart. It can take two years to grow to full size
Keep the soil moist. Chives grow best when watered frequently, as long as there is proper soil drainage.
Once the flowers start to die back, cut the entire plant down to 2-3 inches. This will encourage fresh growth.
Your plant will die back in winter, but the underground bulbs are still alive and will return in the spring.
It’s so nice to be able to go out on my patio and snip chives to add to food. I especially like to add chives to a salad or a baked potato.