Tree Onion Illustration from 1812 (Plate 1469)
For Unusual Food You Grow at Home

The Bulb Bearing Onion

There are many references to tree onions dating back to the 1700s and possibly earlier but very few illustrations. This example is probably one of the best illustrations of the full adult tree onion plant and top sets

The body of the article strongly suggests that the tree onion illustrated and referenced here is different to the "canadense" which has flat rather than rounded leaves and that the tree onion is often mistaken for the "canadense"

This may help explain the notion that the tree onion originated in Canada in many of the earlier records

Tree Onion 1812
A Tree Onion illustration from Curtis`s Botanical Magazine of 1812

Curtis's Botanical Magazine

The magazine was started by William Curtis and issued its first publication in February 1787. It is still in publication and now the longest running botanical magazine with a wealth of invaluable illustrations by some of the world`s foremost illustrators

William Curtis
A page from the Botanical Magazine of 1812 and an illustration of William Curtis from his "Flora Londinium"

Wiliam Curtis (1746 to 1799)

After training as an apothecary; William Curtis became better know for his work as an entomologist and botanist by creating a number of works for publication. He was also employed as a demonstrator of plants within the "Chelsea Physic Garden" providing information about the many plants used by apothecaries for medicinal purposes