Saturday, June 6, 2009


I love chives. The first time I bought some, they were in full bloom, and the man told me to cut them back, and they would re-grow. I did, and he was right, so that's what I do, normally, after the flowers have faded and are ratty looking.

In the herb garden, I have regular chives, and onion, or giant chives, which have larger leaves. Their bloom colors are different. The first 2 photos were taken May 14. (I also grow garlic chives, but only in pots, because they are invasive for me, and don't stay dug out or pulled. They have white flowers later in the summer, and I cut them off before I think they have gone to seed, but still don't put the blooms on the compost pile.)

Onion Chives:

Plain Chives:

May 23rd, the flowers weren't bad, but were starting to fade, and I decided I wanted to go ahead and cut them back so that the chives would re-grow, and I could go back to being able to use the chives from the whole plant. (The stems with flowers are stiff, and I don't like to cook with them.)

Here's the photo that shows the chives cut back, and the scissors I use to cut herbs. They come apart, and can be washed in the dishwasher. (When I use chives in food, I snip them into the size I want with the scissors.)

I had fun taking pics of the blooms, trying to show the purple and pink together.

The photo taken today shows that the chives are growing back well, and I can start using them again.

Do you have other ways you grow or use chives?


  1. Linderhof is on the prairie of SE Kansas -- I grow chives as well -- we use the flowers in salads and it makes a wonderful oniony pink vinegar (if you steep the blossoms in vinegar). I cut mine back as well. Chives are so pretty in the garden I think!

  2. I love chives and chive blossoms in omelets. I'm trying to use them as edging in one section of the rain garden. The rain garden isn't a boggy place, it is a place that drains slowly after a hard rain.


  3. I have Garlic Chives in the garden. Those have white flowers. I need to try those with pink flowers, they are lovely.

  4. Hi Sue! I'm glad I read your post. I didn't know that I could cut them down. I know that I should remove the heads. Well, knowing and doing is not the same. I didn't do it last season, and they grow everywhere in my kitchen garden now. The picture of blooms is stunning when enlarged! Texture and colors are amazing!

  5. Hi Sue,
    It's been a while since I have posted here, I know. I've been meaning to say I love the new look of your blog. And your gardens are gorgeous, I'm so envious. Love those chives!

  6. I think chives are great even if just for the flowers. We've had the same chive plant for many years. My daughter and her friends munch on them when they play outside. I like the flower idea for omelettes that Cameron suggested.

  7. Hi Sue~~ I'm picturing a steaming hot baked potato, a (very small!!) pat of butter and an equally small dollop of sour cream (no calories in my fantasies!) topped with freshly cut chives, growing just a few steps from the back door. Life is good! I also use them on almost all my pasta dishes. Oddly enough just yesterday I cut mine back since they were looking fairly tattered and worn.

    The garlic chives aren't invasive for me but I have to be almost anal about deadheading or...God forbid...I can't think about it...LOL. Butterfly bush is banned for being invasive but chives--methinks they're going unnoticed. Left to nature, they'd easily take over the planet, I'm sure of it. But they are tasty aren't they?

  8. Love chives , only have the one kind but use them for everything from salads to potatoes.

  9. I just cut back the chives I have at work; the ones at home were cut back last week.

    I have used chives in salads. I've also used them on baked potatoes but instead of butter and/or sour cream I prefer shredded cheddar cheese & bacon bits along with either green onion or chives.

  10. Have never grown chives, looks like something I would love to have! Very pretty.

  11. Sue: I cut the chives as soon as they start to head, that way you always have fresh growth.

  12. I just found your blog and have enjoyed reading about your garden.

    My wife and I don't have a lot of room, but have had a lot of fun playing with the space that we have.

    We grow mostly herbs, and lately I have taken to writing an article each week about a different herb we are growing, My chive article, that appeared on June 5, 2009 can be found at

    I am looking forward to reading more about the herbs you grow and how you use them, and invite you to visit my blog. It hasn't been up and running very long and I am still learning the tricks. Someday I hope to have it be as nice as yours. Any suggestions you may have would be welcome.


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