An onion, also known as the bulb onion or common onion, is a vegetable that is the most widely cultivated species of the genus Allium. The shallot is a botanical variety of the onion which was classified as a separate species until 2011.: 21  Its close relatives include garlic, scallion, leek, and chive.This genus also contains several other species variously referred to as onions and cultivated for food, such as the Japanese bunching onion Allium fistulosum, the tree onion Allium × proliferum, and the Canada onion Allium canadense. The name wild onion is applied to a number of Allium species, but A. cepa is exclusively known from cultivation. Its ancestral wild original form is not known, although escapes from cultivation have become established in some regions.

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