Garlic is really popular to be used in different areas such as in our daily meal recipes or as a nutrient supplement. It’s popular so homeowners, home gardeners, and also different commercial producers can grow it.
Garlic is easy to grow as it doesn’t have a whole lot of insect or disease pressure that you need to worry about. So that makes it really easy for you to taking care of.
There are actually huge varieties of different garlic that you can find in different countries. Since there are no international standards to classify the garlic varieties, the classification is different in different countries. There are no international standards in this matter. The main variants to categorized them are on the species and groups of the garlic.
Hardneck and Softneck
There are huge varieties or different types of garlic that you can find in this world. Generally, they can be categorized into two major types which are hardneck and softneck. Sometimes people also called hardneck as stiff garlic.
Those are just some little differences that you can find. But generally, the one that does the best would be the hardneck garlic because it generally overwinters a little bit more.
For softneck garlic, you can typically find in two different types which are silverskin and artichoke. While for hardneck garlic, you can see there are a little bit more types like purple stripe, porcelain, and rocambole. Purple stripe and porcelain give you a little bit of coloration. Fo rocambole, it typically doesn’t do good in warm areas.
Difference Between Hardneck Garlic And Softneck Garlic
The first question people always ask me is what’s the difference between hardneck garlic and softneck garlic?
In a nutshell, it’s very simple. Hardneck varieties don’t store very well but they taste a little bit better than softneck varieties. Softneck varieties store very well but the taste is not as good as hardneck varieties.
Hardneck garlic has a scape and once it is dried, the scape becomes hard. While for softneck garlic, it doesn’t have a scape and the size tends to bigger than hardneck garlic.
The softneck garlic is having a bigger size because it has a second clove cover around it while for hardneck garlic, it just grows around the scape.
There are other different varieties which are known as the elephant garlic. Just like its name suggests, the size of elephant garlic tends to be huge. Typically people think that elephant garlic is a type of garlic but actually it’s more of considered as a leek.
Any type of bulb that you look at in garlic is considered a bulb. We treated it as a biennial because generally, we are going to plant it in the fall of the year. It is going to do some root system but on the bottom of your garlic we have a basal plate and that’s where your root system is going to be.
Generally, when you are planting garlic you can see that there’s a papery type skin that’s on the garlic. Basically what you’re going to do with it is you will take the individual clove with the basal plate or the root systems that are at the bottom. So when you are planting your different types of garlic, you want to make sure that it is pointed down and then that pointed part is going to be up.
Strength of Flavor
Once you start growing garlic you’ll want to experiment with some of the different garlic varieties available.
Here is a list of some of the common varieties below.
They are arranged by the strength of flavor, ranging from very mild (may be eaten raw) to strong:
Very Mild Garlic Varieties
You might want to start with these first if you aren’t an “experienced” garlic eater:
California Early, Cuban Purple
Mild Garlic Varieties
Applegate, Early Red, Italian Red, Toch, Siciliano, Simonetti, Chet’s Italian, Red Korean, Red Russian, Red Streak, S&H Silverskin, Burgandy
Medium Garlic Varieties
Inchelium Red, Maiskij, Silverwhite, Ajo Rojo, Creole Red, Libera Purple, Pescadero Red, Persian Star, Belarus, Purple Glazer, Siberian, Georgian Crystal
Strong Garlic Varieties
Lorz Italian, Shilla, Purple Cauldron, Nootka Rose, Chesnok Red, Metechi, Bogatyr, Georgian Fire, Romania Red, German Stiffneck, Music, German White, Zemo, Rosewood, Wild Buff, Leningrad, Polish Hardneck, Spanish Roaj, Killarney red, German Red, Polish Carpathian, Amish Rocambole, Purple Italian, Rocambole, Italian Easy Peel, Korean Red Hot, Asian Tempest
More Garlic Varieties
We are going to start our discussion with the validator. As you can see, they’re a really big bulb and they give lovely juicy cloves from them. Typically, most people will plant them from October to December so that they can get an earlier variety in the spring.
Provence is like the validator where it also has a big bulb and also lovely juicy taste. But you need to bear in mind that if you want to plant Provence in your garden, you need to plant them before Christmas. If you plant after Christmas, you are going to get much smaller bulbs from them.
Solan is having a larger size compared to other types of garlic. This garlic is really a tasty clove. It is a clove of softneck garlic where you can plant them anytime between October to March.
If you plant them in March, they may not grow quite as big as compared to other months but they’re still really good enough.
Believe it or not, elephant garlic is considered cloves and not bulbs. You can take one elephant garlic and compared it to a standard Provence clove. This type of garlic is actually from the leek family but it tastes very similar to garlic and they’re great fun to grow.
Early purple is being called by its name is for the very reason that they go into the ground a little bit earlier. Normally they are being planted in late November. They are ready earlier in the season like in early May. They taste very good but they don’t store very well.
Tuscany garlic is a lot smaller compared to validator or provence. It’s a hardneck variety and it generally goes into the ground from December to March. It has a really intense flavor. It is smaller but it tastes really nice.
Lautrec is the garlic that all the chefs are after. It’s the prized garlic of the pack. It is small and it doesn’t store very well. but you should give it a try and you won’t regret planting it in your garden.
More Varieties of Garlic
Thai Purple, Tzan, Shantung Purple, Shandong, Chinese Purple, Xian, Tuscan, Topal, Thai Fire, Lotus.
Susanville, Red Toch, Oregan Blue, California Early, Achatami, Transylvanian, Early Red, Lortz, Kettle River Giant, Italy Purple, Aglio Blanco.
Rose Du Lautric, Cuban Red, French Red Rose, Spanish Morada, Burgandy, Creole Red, Fr. Germadour, Native, Creole, Spanish Benittee, Aglio Rossa.
Singing Falls, Japanese, Asian Tempest.
Orting, Brown Sexon, Montana Giant, Osage, Spanish Rojo, Chamisal Wild, Cherokee, Purple IT, Ontario Purple Trillium.
Bai Pi Suan, Brown Vespar, Duganski, Siberian, Metechi, Bogatyr, Brown Tempest, Bzenc.
Greek, Rosewood, Siskiyou Purple, Rose Du Var.
Persian Star, Chesnok Red, Shatila, Telk, Vernchnyana Mcapa, Kishllk, Darchelli.
Glassed Purple Stripe
Vekak, Purple Glazer, Red Rezan.
Unclassified Middle Eastern
Arpakalin, Syrian, Punuk, Himalayan Red, Lampang, Pakestinian, Aktyubinsk, Black Opal, Tai Cang, Verveist, Nepal, Vitnius, Sural, Gadym Saryesak, Ajo Rojo, Belaruis.
Read also: How To Be Organic In The Home Garden
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