Leek Egypt

Essential oil

Allium porrum


General data

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The leek is a perennial plant, a vegetable with an elongated white bulb having a membranous tunic. It extends into a thick, cylindrical rod formed by broad, smooth, bluish-green leaves. The flower stalk bears a globular inflorescence formed of small flowers ranging in color from gray-green to dull red. Distillation of the entire plant produces an essential oil with a distinctive sulfur odor. It is used in aromatherapy principally as a diuretic, like its close relative, the onion.

Most likely native to the eastern Mediterranean, the leek is now grown worldwide. This vegetable was known as far back as early biblical times. The Romans believed that the best-quality leeks were to be found in Egypt, a country that still produces them today. In the Middle Ages, the leek was one of the vegetable-garden plants recommended in the estate management text Capitulare de Villis from the reign of Charlemagne. The leek serves as the emblem of Wales.

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