by Stephen Mifsud
   25 Jul 2024      ()
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Allium neapolitanum   (Naples Leek)

Allium neapolitanum  (AMARYLLIDACEAE.) 
Images for this profile are taken from the Maltese Islands after year 2000.

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Profile Date Jan-2008 (taxon update: none)
Citation for this page Mifsud, S. (2022). Allium neapolitanum - datasheet created on Jan-2008. Retrieved from on 25-Jul-2024

Nomenclature and Basic Information

Species name :

Allium neapolitanumCirillo
Published in Pl. Rar. Neap. 1: 13 (1788)

Synonyms :
(basionym or principal syn.)

Allium amblyopetalum Link
Full list of synonyms : [Euro+Med] [PlantList] [IPNI] [POWO] [Catalogue of Life] []

Plant Family :

Amaryllidaceae Jaume St.-Hil (The Daffodil or Amaryllis Family)
28 species from the Amaryllidaceae family are recorded from the Maltese Islands.

English name(s) :

Naples Leek, White garlic

Maltese name(s) :

Kurrat ta' Napli

Status for Malta :

Naturalised Alien. Species that was introduced in Malta after year 1492 (Columbus' discovery of the New World) and spreads and integrates to form established, non-invasive populations. Species may become become invasive if it widespreads rapidly.

Frequency :

Very Common     Common    Frequent     Scarce     Rare    Very rare     Extinct

Growth form :

Raunkiaer lifeform [info]: GEOPHYTE ( bearing underground bulbs, rhizomes, stolons, etc. )
Germination [info]: Monocotyledon

Legal Protection :

Not legally protected till the last update of this website (2/Mar/2022)

Red List (1989) :

Not listed in the Red Data Book of the Maltese Islands

Flowering Time :

March – April

Colour of Flowers:



Not particularly toxic

Name Derivation :

Allium: The classical Latin name for garlic. (Latin origin )

Planting in rural areas :

Can be planted in rural areas according to ERA Guidelines

Remarks :

One population was found in an afforested area where the bulbs of this leek was likely transferred accidentally with the trees when imported to the Maltese Islands.

Description, Habitat and Distribution
Habitat in Europe: Pastures, cultivated ground and dry, open habitats
Preferred habitat in Malta: Wasteground, abandoned cultivation, maquis
Botanical Description: Bulbs 1-2 cm in diameter, subglobose; outer tunics membranous or crustaceous, not pitted. Stem 20-50 cm, triquetrous, with 2 edges slightly winged. Leaves usually 2, 8-35 x 5-20 mm, sheathing the lower 1/5-1/4 of the stem and almost basal, very narrowly lanceolate to linear, keeled beneath, glabrous, sometimes with denticulate margin. Spathe 1-valved, entire, persistent, shorter than pedicels. Umbel 5-8 cm in diameter, fastigiate or hemispherical, many-flowered; pedicels 15-35 mm. Perianth cup-shaped or stellate; segments 7-12 x 4-6 mm, white, the outer broadly elliptical, the inner elliptical, obtuse. Stamens included; filaments c. 5 mm, simple. Capsule 5 mm, enclosed within the connivent, glistening perianth-segments
Chromosome number: 2n=14, 21, 28, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36
Distributional range: Mediterranean region and Portugal

Distributional map in Europe
and the Mediterranean region (2018):
Occurrences in Europe.
(from Flora Europaea pre year 1993):
Corse, Crete, France (incl. Monaco and Channel Islands but excluding Corse), Greece, Spain (incl. Andorra but excl. the Balaerics), Italy (excl. Sicily and Sardignia), ex-Jugoslavia, Portugal, Sardinia, Sicily and/or Malta, Turkey (European part)
Occurrences in Europe and the Mediterranean region.
(from Euro+Med Checklist, 2019)
  Country codes  
AE(G) Al Ca Co Cr Cy Eg Ga Gr Hs IJ It Ju LS Lu Md Sa Si Sn Tu(A E) [Ag Az Ca Ma Md]

Links & Further literature (0 papers)

Google Web

Google Images

Google Scholar

Research Gate




Med Checklist

Cat. of Life



World Flora Online

Plants of the World Online

Vienna Virt. Herb.

RBGE Herbarium

KEW Herbarium




Kindly Email if there are papers and publications about local studies or information about this species to be included in the list above.

Species Images (7 images)
   Allium neapolitanum   -   Image Code: ALLNP-0.
   Allium neapolitanum   -   Image Code: ALLNP-1.
   Allium neapolitanum   -   Image Code: ALLNP-2.
   Allium neapolitanum   -   Image Code: ALLNP-3.
   Allium neapolitanum   -   Image Code: ALLNP-4.
   Allium neapolitanum   -   Image Code: ALLNP-5.
   Allium neapolitanum   -   Image Code: ALLNP-6.

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