Garlic is quite straightforward to plant in general, but this rule doesn’t apply to all of its species. So how to choose the best garlic varieties to grow?
We will give you tips for selecting the most suitable type of garlic for your requirements and local climate. To achieve a fruitful harvest, let’s join us!
How to Choose the Best Garlic Varieties?
If you choose the right types of garlic to grow, you can keep it for several months and use it as the basis for delightful meals all year long. Here are some tips that can help.
Difference between softneck vs. hardneck garlic
We can divide garlic into two big groups: softneck and hardneck. The neck refers to the stalk growing upward from the bulb.
The leaves of softneck garlic don’t arise from the bulb center and remain soft when they age. Meanwhile, the stem of hardneck garlic comes out from the bulb center. They become harder when they mature.
The two types of garlic differ in their condition requirements and taste. Besides, each of them has multiple subvarieties. We will discuss them in the following sections to give you a detailed guide.
The compatibility of softneck and hardneck varieties depends on the situation. Numerous conditions will affect your final decision.
Growing softneck varieties is terrific if you live in a mild climate. They have a longer shelf life and stronger temperature resistance.
On the other hand, hardneck garlic will be more suitable if you live in a colder climate and demand higher yields with a stronger flavor.
Hardneck garlic has superior resistance to withstand cold weather and snowy or icy conditions. They produce more output than softneck species because their cloves and bulbs are bigger and more plentiful.
Taste of garlic
Of course, we will eat the garlic we grow. Hence, it’s important which taste you like to choose the best species. Garlic is bitter in general, but its bitterness is milder and more pleasant than snapdragons (12- Sheet 1).
Garlic comes in different varieties, each with a specific taste. For example:
- Hot: Romanian Red and Parvin
- Medium: Red Rezan, Tzan, Georgian Crystal, and Lorz Italian
- Mild: Bogatyr, Siberian, and Thermadrone
- Sweet: Asian Tempest and Chesnok Red
Best Varieties Of Garlic To Grow
You need to choose between softneck and hardneck garlic. However, it’s not the end of the day because they are available in numerous subspecies. Picking only one to plant may be tricky.
To save your time, we have compiled the most straightforward garlic varieties to grow here. Let’s check their requirements in living conditions and give them the best ones.
Softneck garlic can flourish in mild climates, such as those with hot summer and gentle winter.
One of the most widely grown softneck species is Silverskin garlic. Due to its long lifespan, you can easily find it in almost any grocery store.
Silverskin garlic has a mild flavor. Some may be slightly spicy, but this taste helps increase their shelf-life.
Silver Rose and Silver White are the two most popular sub-species of Silverskin. Their bulbs often have 12 to 20 cloves. For the best yield, try to grow them in a mild winter.
- California Early
Like the Silverskin garlic, California Early grows best in gentle winters. The best time for planting this species is from October to June.
The bulbs of California Early garlic often have 10 to 16 medium-sized cloves. They are easy to grow and can last eight months when properly stored.
Many people also love California Early garlic’s mild flavor and use it for different recipes.
- Western Rose
Another well-known softneck type is Western Rose. It has a long shelf life and demands little maintenance during the planting season, which is October or later.
Some people use garlic for decoration. If you like this idea, you won’t want to miss Western Rose.
The size of the Western Rose cloves is quite irregular, with smaller cloves encircled by the larger ones. There are often six to ten cloves in one bulb.
Compared to softneck species, hardneck garlic can endure more severe weather. They even grow better in such conditions.
- Korean Red Hot
A famous hardneck garlic is Korean Red Hot, which thrives in cold winters and is ready to harvest in the first few weeks of June.
After harvest, the garlic usually remains in storage well into the winter. However, its thin, removable wrapping leaves the cloves uncovered, making it one of the least long-lasting garlic varieties.
Typically, one bulb of Korean Red Hot has eight or nine uniformly sized, large cloves. The cloves come with a strong, garlicky flavor that fans of the spice love so much.
If health is your top concern, think about Siberian garlic. Its allicin content strengthens your immune system and helps control cholesterol and circulation.
Siberian garlic has subdued flavors that enrich the taste of your food. Furthermore, the cloves caramelize when roasting, giving cooked foods a distinctive flavor.
Each bulb may have five to nine big cloves. For larger cloves, you should grow them in December and then harvest them in the summer.
- Turkish Giant
The Turkish Giant yields huge bulbs with a strong flavor, as its name implies. A bulb has six to eight big cloves, attracting both cooks and gardeners.
The Turkish Giant garlic is ideal for individuals who want to grow a big crop of garlic to store throughout the year because it stays well for up to nine months.
Aside from the size, you may be impressed with this garlic’s bold flavor. Adding to baking or cooking will give your food a strong taste.
Garlic comes in various varieties. Choose the right one for your needs, and you will be halfway to success.
Hopefully, your gardening will become easier with our guide. Please feel free to ask if you need more tips for growing garlic. Thank you for reading!