Chives are a member of the allium family, just like onions and garlic. They're easy to grow and have a fresh, mild, onion-like flavour that goes beautifully with salads, soups and new potatoes.
Chives can easily be grown in pots, and bees love the pretty purple flowers. All the herb seeds we sell are organic, and the chive variety we currently stock is Staro (Allium schoenoprasum).
Chives are a perennial herb, meaning they should come back year after year.
How to grow chives
Chives are easy to grow from seed, and don't need much attention once established.
Sow seeds indoors from March to July, on a windowsill or in a well-ventilated greenhouse.
Sprinkle thinly on top of free-draining compost, then add a little more compost so the seeds are just covered.
Coir (the fibre extracted from the outer husk of coconuts) is peat-free, and can be used as an alternative to traditional compost to get the seeds started. Dehydrated coir discs are what we include in our complete seed starter kits.
Put in a warm, sunny location and keep the soil moist until the seedlings emerge.
Coir does not contain the nutrients chives need to grow large. When the seedlings are large enough to handle, transplant into pots that are at least 12cm across and filled with good quality, multi-purpose potting compost. Put 4 seedlings into each pot and continue to water regularly.
Alternatively, you can sow chive seeds directly into a well-prepared and sunny outdoor plot. Do so from March to July, once the danger of frost has past.
Sow your seeds thinly in rows 30cm apart. Cover seeds with about 1cm of soil, and water regularly.
As the young plants grow, thin the seedlings in each row to 20-25cm apart.
When chives are fully mature, you can lift and divide overcrowded clumps during the spring.
How to harvest
You can harvest chives once the leaves are around 15cm tall.
Chives are a 'cut and come again' herb. Cut leaves with sharp scissors at ground level as and when you need them, and at least every 6-8 weeks. The leaves should quickly grow back.
How to order
If you'd like to buy just one or two packets of our chive seeds, please visit our online shop.
If you'd like to buy 50 or more packets, for larger scale gardening or grow-your-own ventures, we offer good bulk discounts. Drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org and we can give you a custom quotation for your project.