Leeks facts

The leek is a biennial crop which is grown as an annual. It belongs to the same family of onions and garlic. It possesses a stalk than a bulb. Leek looks like green onions in appearance. The leaves, white onion base and green stalk are edible portions of the leek. The cylindrical white bulb is formed by encircling the bases of the leaves. The white base of the stem could also be called as shank.

Name Leeks
Scientific Name Allium ampeloprasum
Native Middle Asia but cultivated in various parts of the world such as Western Asia and Mediterranean countries.
Common/English Name Broadleaf Wild Leek, English Leek, Elephant Garlic, Great-Headed Garlic, Great round-headed Leek, European Leek, Kurrat Leek, Kurrat, Pearl Onion, Levant Garlic, Wild Leek
Name in Other Languages Afrikaans: Prei
Albanian: Presh
Arabic: Kurrat
Austrian: Lauch
Basque: Porru
Belarusian: Tsabulevaja
Belgian: Porei
Bosnian: Prasa
Brazil: Alho-Poró
Bulgaria: Praz
Catalan: Porro
Chinese: Jiu Cong
Czech: Pór Zahradní Setý
Danish: Perleløg Porre
Dutch: Wild Look
Eastonian: Porrulauk
Esperanto: Ampeloprazo
Farsi: Gandana
Finnish: Purjo
French: Faux Poireau
Gaelic: Cainneann
Galician: Porreta
Georgian: Prassa
German: Wilder Lauch
Greek: Praso
Hebrew: Kereshah
Hungarian: Francia Hagyma
Icelandic: Blađylaukur
India:-
Hindi: Gandha
Manipuri: Maroy Napakpi
Marathi: Khorat
Tamil: Iraakuuccittam
Urdu: Bara Sir Wala Lasan
Indonesia: Bawang Prei
Italian: Porrandello
Japanese: Nira Negi
Kashmiri: Godu
Kazakh: Luk Porej
Kenya: Gĭtũngũrũ
Khmer: Khtum-Khchal
Kirghiz: Porej Pijazi
Kiribati: Rike
Laotian: Pèènz Fàlangx
Latvian: Puravi, Sīpoli
Macedonian: Golemoglavest Luk
Maltese: Kurrat Slavagg
Malaysia: Bawang Sayuran
Maori: Riiki
Mongolian: Songino
Norwegian: Purre
Persian: Tareh
Polish: Czosnek Por
Portuguese: Alho Bravo
Philippines:
Bisaya: Sibuyas-Bisaya
Tagalog: Kutsai
Pampangan: Kuse
Pangasinan: Kusay
Russian: Luk Porei
Serbian: Luk
Slovašcina: Poletni Luk
Sorbian: Porej
Spanish: Ajo Elefante
Swahili: Vitunguu Liki
Swedish: Purjo
Swiss: Poireau
Taiwan: Yang Cong
Tajik: Siri Tez
Thailand: Krathiam Tai
Tibetan: Ñūqtsoon
Turkish: Yabani Pırasa
Turkmen: Ýapyşak Şogan
Ukrainian: Cibulja-Porej
Welsh: Cenhinen Wyllt
Wolof: Poro
Vietnamese: Poa-Rô Hành
Xhosa: Iliki
Yiddish: Pureh-Tsibehleh
Plant Growth Habit Biennial, herbaceous, bulbous, robust, odorous, erect
Growing Climate Cool climates
Soil Fertile and well drained
Plant Size 60–100 cm (2-3 feet) high
Lifespan One year (biennial which is grown as an annual)
Root Fibrous, shallow
Stem Swollen, white, thick, Height: 0.5-0.75 m, Diameter: 2 inches
Leaf Alternate, cylindrical, flat; blue-green or yellow-green; Length: 3 ft. (0.9 m)
Flower Ovate-oblong, white, pink or purple, Length: 4–6 mm
Bulb shape & size Solitary, cylindrical ovoid- subglobose; Diameter: 2-3 mm, Length: 8-10 cm (3-4 inches)
Flavor/aroma Intense
Fruit Taste Less pungent
Seed Six small seeds, black, 2–3 mm × 2 mm
Varieties/Types
  • American Flag
  • Giant Musselburg
  • King Richard
  • Otina
  • Pancho
Health Benefits
  • Prevent cancer
  • Prevent heart ailments
  • Healthy pregnancy
  • Cholesterol levels
  • Assist in losing weight
  • Healthy gut
  • Prevent infections
  • Treats anemia
  • Prevents stroke
  • Combat free radical damage
Major Nutritions (Raw) Vitamin K (phylloquinone) 41.8 µg (34.83%)
Iron, Fe 1.87 mg (23.38%)
Manganese, Mn 0.428 mg (18.61%)
Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine) 0.207 mg (15.92%)
Vitamin B9 (Folate) 57 µg (14.25%)
Copper, Cu 0.107 mg (11.89%)
Vitamin C (Ascorbic acid) 10.7 mg (11.89%)
Vitamin A, RAE 74 µg (10.57%)
Carbohydrate 12.59 g (9.68%)
Magnesium, Mg 25 mg (5.95%)
Calories in 1cup (89 gm) Raw 54 Kcal.
Precautions  
  • Those who are allergic to garlic may experience allergic symptoms to leeks.
  • Leeks have oxalate in small amount so it should be avoided by individuals with oxalate kidney stones.
  • It possess high amount of nickel so it should be avoided by those having nickel allergy.
Other Facts
  • The Great Roman Emperor Nero consumed Leek to improve his singing.
  • The troops of British King Cadwallader used Leeks to recognize friends from enemies on battle field. This saved lives of many and won a victory over the Saxons by the British army.
  • In Europe during the middle ages, girls used to keep the Leeks under their pillows on St. David’s Day in order to see their future husbands in dream.
  • Leek is the National Emblem of Welsh.
  • It is an easiest plant to grow in home garden.