Definition of chives in English:


plural noun

  • A small Eurasian plant related to the onion, with purple-pink flowers and long tubular leaves which are used as a culinary herb.

    Allium schoenoprasum, family Liliaceae (or Alliaceae)

    ‘freshly chopped chives’
    ‘chive and garlic dressing’
    • ‘Plant alliums such as garlic and chives, as well as anise, coriander, nasturtiums, and petunias as companion plants.’
    • ‘Good choices to plant now are basil, chives, cilantro, oregano, parsley rosemary, sage, and thyme.’
    • ‘Choose five of the following fresh herbs: flat-leaf parsley, chives, mint, chervil, basil, dill, tarragon.’
    • ‘Today I've planted a tray each of curly parsley, plain parsley and chive seeds and pricked out all the rudbekia and most of the Viola (Johnny Jump Up) seedlings into modules.’
    • ‘On this occasion, the garden boasted several types of basil, parsley, chives, angelica and mintas well as lettuce, tomatoes and kaffir limes!’
    • ‘Those who really like onion flavours should throw the pink chive flowers in too.’
    • ‘Arrange some fried lotus root chips and salsify to one side of the plate, spoon some sauce around the dish, and garnish with garlic roots, chive blossoms, sea salt, and rosemary.’
    • ‘The choice of herb tends to be decided by availability but in an ideal world, it would be a mix of flat-leaf parsley, chives and tarragon.’
    • ‘A few chives and a chive flower, plus a some mint leaves from a plant that is quickly recovering from a recent near-death experience.’
    • ‘The site is a former dairy farm, now given over to a variety of herbs - ranging from basil, parsley, coriander and chives to edible flowers and mixed salad leaves.’
    • ‘I like rosemary, thyme, mint, marjoram or chive flowers tossed over dishes made from eggs, vegetables or cheese.’
    • ‘Add decorative and edible flower heads to your salads, such as nasturtiums, marigold petals, violas and chive flowers.’
    • ‘There is nothing better than having fresh herbs on hand for cooking and marjoram, thyme, sage, chives, rosemary, parsley and basil will all thrive on a windowsill.’
    • ‘Add the selection of herbs, particularly the coriander, and toss in the chive flowers.’
    • ‘Plant seedlings of basil, chives, oregano, parsley, rosemary, sage, and thyme.’
    • ‘The likes of chives, basil and marjoram are ideally suited to being grown in a pot and will happily sit on the kitchen windowsill or spend the summer on the doorstep.’
    • ‘Planting too early in mild climates allows too long a time for clove formation, and the plants may form a bush that looks more like a chive plant.’
    • ‘If he's fixing a salad, he steps outside the back door and snips from the beds of lemon thyme, garlic chives, parsley, and mint to add to the mix of lettuces he grows from spring to fall.’
    • ‘The tomatoes, aubergines and peppers are coming along in the greenhouse, as are the herbs Rosemary sowed about 10 days ago - thyme, sweet basil, chives and parsley.’
    • ‘I had wormwood, soapwort, dill, yarrow, tarragon, chives, rosemary, lavender, angelica, many kinds of basil and thymes.’
    • ‘Herbs such as chives, lemon balm, marjoram, and mint are also attractive to insects.’
    • ‘In the summer find burdock, turnips, cucumbers, mint, lemon grass, Chinese chive, soybeans and coriander.’
    • ‘Plants deer especially dislike include catmint, chives, lavender, sage, spearmint, thyme and yarrow-all useful and easy to grow in this area.’
    • ‘Toss a handful of chive blossoms on top of your salad tonight.’
    • ‘Sow herbs, including basil, chives, coriander and marjoram in the garden or in windowsill pots.’
    • ‘Just the thought of fresh bunches of coriander, basil, chives, spring onions and mint at my doorstep makes me all giddy with excitement.’
    • ‘For fresh flavorings this summer, plant basil, chives, cilantro, oregano, parsley, rosemary, sage, and thyme.’
    • ‘The Herb Garden includes 20 varieties, such as basil, lemon grass, hot and sweet peppers, chives, rosemary and much, much more.’
    • ‘Some easy-to-grow annual herbs that can be transplanted to your garden next spring include basil, dill, oregano, chives, coriander, and anise.’
    • ‘We came home via the garden centre to buy some more plant pots - my basil and chive seedlings will be ready to live outside soon - and some more organic compost.’
    • ‘So if you plant 20 or 25 chive plants, then you never have to buy chives again.’
    • ‘I also gave the potted plants (rosemary, chives, oregano and garlic) a bit more compost and a top dressing of bark chips to smarten them up, keep down the weeds and help with water retention.’
    • ‘On an outside window sill, basil, thyme, bay, chervil, sage, chives and marjoram will grow happily in a pot.’
    • ‘Compact herbs such as chives, dwarf basil, lavender, and oregano fit nicely into the openings of concrete blocks.’
    • ‘Not only are they aromatic and in season most of the year, but there is nothing better than having fresh thyme, rosemary, sage, parsley, coriander and chives at your fingertips.’


Middle English: from Old French, dialect variant of cive, from Latin cepa ‘onion’.