Chives are delicious, versatile, and easy to grow. They make tasty additions to various dishes and add beautiful color to the herb garden.
Chive leaves and flowers impart a light oniony flavor and are easy to grow and use for beginner gardeners.
Chives need full sun, but they can also tolerate partially shaded areas, so they can be planted in pots on decks and patios. When it comes to soil, chives are fine. However, for best results, plant chives in well-drained soil rich in organic material.
Like most plants, chives don't do when with poor water drainage They are ideal for container and raised bed gardens. Ensure chives get plenty of water until they are well established and need water throughout the growing season.
More than just your average pungent herb, chives are a quick-growing perennial herb that will return every spring for many years in all but the coldest zones. So, as long as you give them a little spring TLC, they will grow on and on into your garden.
Tips for using chives
The chive is an onion family member with a milder flavor than onions. Chives grow best in full sun with well-drained soil and prefer moderate amounts of water. Cut off the leaves, including ½ inch of stem, to harvest chives to allow regrowth.
As delicate as they are pretty, chives flowers are a delicate addition to your spring and summer salads. Use the purple blooms as decorations on carrot salads infused in vinegar, or add them to your homemade soups for a flavor that will make your guests want more.
Related: How to make infused vinegar
What makes them special? The blossoms are a vibrant purple and taste very mild, almost grassy. We mix ours with white wine vinegar to make a brightly colored and mildly flavored chive blossom vinegar. Serve it on steamed broccoli, fish, or chicken. Or drizzle it on cooked French fries!
Chives are generally best enjoyed fresh but can be preserved by freezing. Make an ice cube in your tray, fill a resealable bag with a small amount of water, and freeze, then store the chives in the freezer until you need them. Frozen, the chives will retain their color and flavor for about 6 months.