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applestar
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GARLIC varieties! What are you planting? Favorites?

I was looking for a single thread where we were comprehensively discussing different garlic varieties, but I didn't see any, although there are plenty of threads about when and how to plant them.

I'm a garlic novice and am not "fluent" in garlic. I do know you have to choose varieties suited to your area to get good bulbs. There are also garlic varieties for the north and garlic varieties for the south due to winter hardiness.

I prefer garlic that form large cloves. In my garden, hardneck Music and leek cousin Elephant are the two varieties that have performed best so far. But I have to admit that I lost track of which harvested garlic are Elephant and which are Music so I'm going to have to tell them apart as they grow next year. :roll:

(You can tell them apart because Music will grow the curly, edible/delicious scapes while Elephant will grow straight scapes which can still be eaten but need to be harvested early.)

This fall for next year's harvest, I've planted smaller but still nice sized cloves that are probably Music, largest cloves which are definitely Elephant Garlic cloves, Elephant Garlic rounds*, and Elephant Garlic corms*
* Some bulbs will produce small, offset corms that will grow against the lower side of the bulb. These tough little nutlike corms will produce a plant that develops a solid (noncloving) bulb resembling an onion bulb. These solid bulbs may be used for cooking, but if replanted in the fall, the solid garlic bulbs will produce plants that should clove the next year.
https://www.lsuagcenter.com/en/lawn_gard ... Garden.htm

I'm also trying three new-to-me varieties: turban Tzan, hardneck Russian Giant Marble Purple Stripe, and porcelain Georgian Crystal.

I've tried a couple of other varieties that have not done well. I don't quite remember their names right now, but will try to dig up my notes.
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ButterflyLady29
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Re: GARLIC varieties! What are you planting? Favorites?

I've got garlic too but couldn't tell you what varieties I have. One is an old heirloom that I got from a friend who got it from her uncle who got it from another ancestor. It's got small bulbs with good flavor and little bite. It forms those curly scapes which get too tough to eat real fast, but the little bulbils that are formed when you don't pick the scapes cook up nice and tender.

Then there's another larger stronger kind I got from my mom, also passed down through another family and given to her.

They've done great in a raised bed in my front yard. I never dig them all up, kind of lazy gardening. But it works for me and keeps the rabbits from eating in that section of the yard.

theforgottenone1013
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Re: GARLIC varieties! What are you planting? Favorites?

Just planted cloves of German Red, Carpathian, Inchelium Red, and Transylanian today. I've been growing these four for several years and, except for one year when the softnecks underperformed, they have always grown well for me. I also planted some bulbils of Belarus that I got in a trade this year.

German Red, Carpathian, and Belarus are hardnecks. Inchelium Red and Transylvanian are softnecks.

-Rodney

pepperhead212
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Re: GARLIC varieties! What are you planting? Favorites?

Music is one of my all-time favorites, along with Metechi, and, in the last three years, Estonian Red. I like garlic with large cloves, so I don't have to peel so many, as with those small softneck cloves. Estonian red is the largest I have seen yet, besides elephant, which isn't true garlic, and has little flavor. Last season the average weight of the cloves I planted was .4 oz for ER (one clove was .70 oz!), 36 oz. for Music, and .32 oz. for Metechi. A little smaller this season, which is why I planted 149 cloves,
versus 123 last year.


Most garlic I have tried, but not grown again, was due to a short storage life, though some just didn't get very large. ER is the one with the shortest life of these three, so I simply use it first. Then the Music, which has an 8-10 month life, and the Metechi slightly longer, though by then I just look at all of them, and see which needs to be used first. Another variety I have grown frequently, mainly when the Music or Metechi aren't available, is the German Hardy Porcelain. This has great flavor, slightly smaller cloves, but is the best I have ever grown for storage. One head I left hanging in my basement for over a year, just to see how long it would last, and it finally got just a hint of a green sprout inside after 13 months, and was in better shape than a lot of the garlic you see in stores!

Rocombole varieties are iffy in this area - they require a deep freeze, and sometimes we get a mild winter, and they simply don't grow! I learned this early on, and stopped trying those.
Dave

Peter1142
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Re: GARLIC varieties! What are you planting? Favorites?

Honestly I have been to the Saugerties garlic festival and I think the different varities are 95% BS. The growing conditions make a much greater difference, and garlic adapts and mutates rapidly. None of the varieties looked the same from one cart to another.

Of course, there is definitely a big difference between hardneck and softneck garlic, and elephant which isn't actually garlic but a bulbing leek.

Here up North, hardnecks sre recommended, but softnecks can survive the winter too. But to me hardnecks are better in every way - bigger easy to peel cloves, bigger bulbs, and delicious scapes. Bigger plants that compete better with weeds too.

Down South they don't recommend hardneck garlic as it doesn't get cold enough for vernalization to get good bulbs.

I planted about 70 cloves of Music this year, in mid October. They started sprouting last weekend.
Zone 6b SE NY
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applestar
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Re: GARLIC varieties! What are you planting? Favorites?

Ths is great! :D

I didn't realize there would be so much interest :-() ...and I'm learning so much already!

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erins327
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Re: GARLIC varieties! What are you planting? Favorites?

This is the perfect forum to ask!

Where do you guys get your garlic bulbs from? I feel like here in Texas, they all look at me strangely at the nursery. "No, they say <chuckle chuckle> you can't plant garlic now, you have to plant that in January." Whhhaaaa?? Been doing in in October for years with no problem!

My only choice was to get grocery store organic ones, but who knows what the hell kinda garlic that was. I was also able to find some Colossal garlic at a boutique grocery last week so I'm taking a chance on planting that as well. They were beautiful.
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imafan26
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Re: GARLIC varieties! What are you planting? Favorites?

Very few nurseries will send garlic to Hawaii. I grow California Garlic I buy from Costco. At least is is the right kind for Hawaii. I tried to grow elephant garlic and it actually shrank, before I realized I cannot grow Northern types. I put the garlic in the refrigerator in July and they were already starting to sprout in September. I planted a few but I conditioned another set and planted them at the herb garden a couple of weeks ago. They are already growing tops about 3 inches tall. I am going to try to plant more in my home garden. I don't have that much hope for them there, my home garden is better for fruit and greens and not so good for bulbs and roots. I have too much nitrogen.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

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jal_ut
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Re: GARLIC varieties! What are you planting? Favorites?

I tried a variety of kinds years back. Finally found one that actually works in this climate. I just keep enough for planting and propagate this one. I haven't bought garlic for years. It looks like Music, but I confess, I have lost its name. Don't remember where I got the start.
Gardening at 5000 feet elevation, zone 4/5 Northern Utah, Frost free from May 25 to September 8 +/-

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windandvane
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Re: GARLIC varieties! What are you planting? Favorites?

I have had some pretty good results before with elephant garlic, but some of that success might have been due to my own sheer determination, as roasted whole giant garlic cloves are one of my most very favorite foods in the world, lol.
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applestar
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Re: GARLIC varieties! What are you planting? Favorites?

This year, I bought organic garlic for planting from Keene Organics. Very nicely sized cloves even though I didn't get the top grade size ones, and in great fresh condition, and good instructions and detailed descriptions.
Learning never ends because we can share what we've learned. And in sharing our collective experiences, we gain deeper understanding of what we learned.

AnnaIkona
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Re: GARLIC varieties! What are you planting? Favorites?

I love Russian garlic! It's pretty big too.
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