Sunday, March 13, 2011

Snow? No.....

Our meadow is white this week.  It looks a bit like a fine covering of snow.  Without the cold.

What is that beautiful white flower covering the meadow?  There may be some plants of the wild onion or wild garlic mixed in, but most of this is the false garlic, or crow poison.  Nothoscordum bivalve.  

You can eat wild onions and wild garlic, but false garlic is poisonous.

How to tell the difference?  Dig one up and smell it.  If it smells like onion, you've probably got wild onion.  If it is odorless or smells a bit like dirt - false garlic.

False garlic is common in Texas, and most of the southeast.  I dig it up in the garden areas.  You have to make sure you dig up the entire bulb, or it will return.

I could never dig it all up from the meadow.  Nor would I try.  I enjoy the look of a false spring snow.


  1. I should love to see your "false snow" rather than the cold white blanket I am looking out on just now. it will be gone soon though. These delicate blooms do create a lovely blooming meadow but gee they do look invasive. I especially like your third photo.

  2. I too like the false snow. Still some here but at 35 degrees, it is on its way out. hopefully for GOOD.

  3. Carol - I'd rather have false snow than the real stuff, too. Invasive? You bet!

    GWGT - Glad to hear your snow is melting. I know you are ready for spring!

  4. It looks beautiful, and I am sorry to hear it is poisonous. Come to think of it, we enjoy lots of poisonous plants here, oleander and azaleas to name a few, so it is not so bad. I don't think I have seen false garlic before though...

  5. Oh gosh. I recall nibbling on wild onion/garlic as a wee child. Only now do I learn how close I came to poisoning! Yikes!

  6. Masha - as much as there is here, it is hard to believe it hasn't taken over the whole world! I hope it never spreads there. Not a bad weed to control in the flower beds, but still, a weed is a weed!

    Caroline - Only this false garlic is poisonous. The other wild onion and wild garlic is edible. You have to smell them to really tell the difference. If you recall it tasted like onion, you were eating the right thing. Thanks for commenting.

  7. We have wild onions all over. I've never tried eating them, but the horses do. I can always tell when they've been eating them, because their breath smells like onion. I guess that's a good sign that we don't have the poisonous variety!

  8. Shannon - horses with onion breath! That is funny!


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