Saugerties Garlic Festival Site Courtesy Hope Farm Press
To return to Garlic Festival Opening Page
ALL GARLIC IS NOT EQUAL
Garlic information that is timeless.
Hard Neck Garlic is Considered THE Gourmet Garlic ...
- There is a difference in flavor among the various strains of garlic with "hard neck" garlic (Allium ophioscorodon) winning the taste test among gourmets and chefs alike.
"Hard neck garlic grows well in cold climates and while it may not have the largest heads, the individual cloves are generally larger and have a flavor that is preferred by chefs and garlic aficionados," according to David Stern, president of the Garlic Seed Foundation.
It's true that of all the garlic grown and harvested in the United States, California leads in quantity production. However, do not discount New York State and New England when it comes to growing great tasting garlic. Garlic growers in western New York grow hundreds of tons of the "hard neck" garlic, much of which they will be bringing to sell at the Garlic Festival in Saugerties, NY.
"This garlic is not only great for eating, but you may plant some of it as none of it is treated to prevent sprouting," according to Pat Reppert, one of the coordinators of the festival. "At last year's festival, my husband bought 30 pounds of it, planted 8 long rows of it in our vegetable garden and despite the wicked winter, we harvested well over 100 pounds of the best looking and best tasting garlic I've ever had," she said.
The Garlic Seed Foundation is an organization of people interested in garlic -
in growing it, marketing it and testing the many strains of garlic under different growing conditions. "We have members all over the United States but most of them are clustered in the northeast and the northwest," said David Stern, "and what we're most interested in is educating the public on how to grow and harvest their own garlic." Garlic experts associated with the Garlic Seed Foundation will be lecturing at the Garlic Festival too.
Keeping accurate scientific records on the many garlic strains in cultivation in the colder climates is another of the goals of the association. "We have field grown and tested well over 75 strains with the best of these strains remaining in cultivation. This is what we're all about," said Stern.
October is the month to plant garlic in colder climates. The seeds are the individual cloves of the garlic, which are planted - growing tip up - 2" to 3" beneath the soil. A winter mulch is recommended where the winters are severe. In early spring, a well balanced fertilizer is spread around the plants and the area should be kept weed free. When the plant sends up a flowering shoot, this must be clipped in order for the plant to produce a large head of garlic. In most instances the crop is ready to be harvested and dried by the middle to end of July.
The plants should be put in a dry place to cure after harvesting. When the tops have dried, they can be cut off an inch above the tips of the cloves and the dirt brushed off the heads. Mesh bags make a good storage vehicle.
To join the Garlic Seed Foundation for one year, send a $10 check made payable to Garlic Seed Foundation and send PO Box 149, Rose, NY 14542.
QUESTIONS? direct email to ???
Information email address was "not renewed"
To return to
To learn more about Hope Farm Press & Bookshop or to email your comments. . .
Copyright © 1996 1997 & 2002 by Richard Frisbie -- All rights reserved.