Chesnok Red Organic garlic is a purple-striped hardneck garlic with good exterior colour and nine to eleven cloves per bulb. The cloves peel easily and have good aroma and a nice, lingering flavour. Chesnok will store for four to six months through winter if cured correctly. This variety originated in the Shvelisi region, Republic of Georgia. Once garlic sprouts begin to show obvious signs of growth in the spring, scatter some Balanced Organic Fertilizer on the surface of the soil in between and around the plants. This will give them a good push for spring growth. Once the top two thirds of the plants have turned brown, gently pull the bulbs up without causing any damage to the outer skins. Lay the whole plants somewhere airy, out of direct sunlight for a few days before continuing with the garlic curing process.
The best time to plant garlic is in the fall. The second best time to plant is NOW!
Garlic, or Allium sativum, comes in two basic types – hardneck and softneck.
Hardneck varieties (var. ophioscorodon) usually grow a woody flower stalk or scape out of the centre of the bulb. They do best in cold, damp climates. Typically a bulb develops four to ten large cloves. Flavours are strong and often spicy and complex. Most hardneck garlic does not store well and is best used fresh. Hardneck varieties come in three different types: Rocamboles, which have thin parchment-like skins, and are easy to peel, Porcelains which have thick tough skin and do store well, and Purple Striped, named for their distinctive colouring.
Softneck garlic (var, sativum) evolved from hard-neck varieties and grows best in warmer climates. Bulbs keep well and typically contain multiple cloves. They don’t produce flower stalks unless they are stressed. Softneck varieties come in two different types: Silverskin and Artichoke. Silverskins have soft pliable necks that lend themselves to braiding, lots of small cloves and spicy flavours. Artichoke garlic has larger but fewer cloves and a milder flavour. Most of the commercially grown garlics found in the grocery store are soft neck varieties.