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 Post subject: For those planting garlic this year...
PostPosted: Thu Nov 07, 2013 12:19 am 
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Posts: 1142
It may not help for this season, but I have a new variety that looks like a keeper: Estonian Red. I got one HUGE clove from a lady I traded seeds with last season, and the head was large, with intense flavor, so I had to find more for this season. Few had it, and most were out of it, but I found one, and ordered three heads, figuring I would just replant all of it next season. Well, I got six REALLY LARGE heads, with an apology from the lady, stating that the heads didn't get as large as they should have, so she sent me six! I got 34 cloves, 13.6 oz total, so they were .4 oz average, with music and metechi (my two faithfuls) 3.2 and 3.6 oz average, respectively. And one of those ER cloves was .70 oz! Definitely some of the largest garlic I have seen so far.

I got 123 cloves planted, and 40 shallots, in what was left of the rows. Now I just wait until July!

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 Post subject: Re: For those planting garlic this year...
PostPosted: Thu Nov 07, 2013 7:12 am 
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Joined: Tue Jan 06, 2009 3:54 pm
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Location: New York
Dave,
Interesting. I have never seen Estonian Red at the Saugerties Garlic Festival (in the 16 yrs that I've been going) and sounds quite impressive. If they turn out as well as they sound and you want to share a clove or 2 next yr I'm interested!
You certainly plant an impressive amount! I plant more shallots than garlic (this year German White and Music, also my go-to) but no where close to the number that you do. I'm always impressed with the varieties of all plants and veggies in your garden.
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 Post subject: Re: For those planting garlic this year...
PostPosted: Fri Mar 21, 2014 10:24 am 
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Garlic was up 2 days before our last (hopefully) snow, a week before spring. The Estonian red came up first, but only by a couple days. Music was quick to follow.

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 Post subject: Re: For those planting garlic this year...
PostPosted: Fri Mar 21, 2014 10:31 am 
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Joined: Fri Dec 19, 2008 10:45 pm
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Location: Ottawa, ON
One of my primary complaints about music is that the cloves are too large :)

I'd actually like modest sized heads and cloves, flavourful and keeps the winter well. Any suggestions?


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 Post subject: Re: For those planting garlic this year...
PostPosted: Fri Mar 21, 2014 7:28 pm 
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Location: New York
Paul,
I haven't grown any garlic with modest size cloves in 10+ years but IIRC Russian Red was one.
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 Post subject: Re: For those planting garlic this year...
PostPosted: Fri Mar 21, 2014 7:28 pm 
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Paul,

I mainly use music when I need a LOT of garlic, which happens frequently in the SE Asian food I love so much. And this is why the Estonian red impressed me from day one. It's nice peeling just 3 cloves for a dish calling for 12! Metechi is my second favorite, but also fairly large, and stores very well.

German white porcelain might be a garlic you would like, and I often order it when metechi is not available. Its cloves are a little smaller, but only because it has more cloves/head, on average - still good sized heads, and intense flavor. One time, as a test, I kept some in my basement for a year, and it was just starting to get that green inside the clove, so it keeps well, like most porcelains and purple stripes. But, let's face it - almost all hardnecks have somewhat large cloves, which is why I like them. I HATE peeling those little cloves of garlic inside softnecks, and actually, I don't remember the last time I did it (friends know not to ask me to do that as a task if they have softecks LOL) - I don't grow it, and never buy it. I rarely use a small amount of garlic.

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 Post subject: Re: For those planting garlic this year...
PostPosted: Sun Jul 06, 2014 12:30 am 
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I harvested my garlic last week, a bit early, only because it was going to rain again, and ideally the ground should dry out before harvest, which is not happening this year! The Estonian red is definitely the largest garlic I have ever grown, with some heads over 2 3/4"! The music was the smallest, only because it could have grown more, since only one leaf was brown on most plants, though I didn't want it sitting in mud, which is why I pulled it early. Still, it wasn't small, just smallest of the three. Metechi was in between, with a couple near 2 3/4". Here are the photos of a bunch of the harvest.

I also harvested my shallots yesterday, and they were the largest I have ever seen! That photo album will have photos of the shallots later - I finished them in the dark, so I couldn't take them then. I must have planted some odd varieties besides my usual Holland red - maybe something from the Asian market, though I usually wouldn't have bought any at that time, and would still be using the harvest from that season. Most had died back entirely, but some had the stiff seed stalk still standing, which didn't look like the Holland red. I'll definitely not need any garlic or shallots fro a LONG time!

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 Post subject: Re: For those planting garlic this year...
PostPosted: Sun Jul 06, 2014 1:51 am 
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I too harvested my garlic this weekend and what a HUGE disappointment, first time EVER. I planted 18 cloves and can only imagine that this horribly cold winter is the culprit because I only harvested 5, and they were 5 very small heads. I also started to harvest my shallots and while they did better, I've still lost half of that crop as well. 14 so far and it looks like another 12 or so to harvest. Versus 96+ last year after planting the same amount.
Huh.


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 Post subject: Re: For those planting garlic this year...
PostPosted: Sun Jul 06, 2014 1:01 pm 
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Sorry to hear about your garlic and shallot losses. I had a terrible winter here, too, which killed a few hardy perennials, but had almost none of the garlic (only 6 or 7 of 120+) and shallots (2 or 3 empty spaces) that didn't pop up in the spring. And not one of those Estonian Reds didn't sprout! I can't imagine what could do that to garlic, since they don't seem to mind deep freezes, and even fluctuations in temps don't seem to bother them...sort of like a weed! Maybe have a soil test, though if there was something low or irregular in the soil, it seems that this would account for the very small ones, not the missing ones. Maybe there is a varmint in the area that likes garlic? Or maybe they were too wet for an extended period, from melting snow, and many of them rotted - something I've seen mentioned by gardeners in those regions on the gardening forums.

One season when I started growing garlic I tried Spanish roja, and only got a bunch of slightly grown cloves at harvest! Turns out that we had a VERY mild winter that season, and those, and rocomboles in general, need a very cold winter to grow. Since I'm not guaranteed of that here, I had to find varieties that will grow in either type of winter. Maybe try the some of the rocomboles in your area, since you will be likely to get a cold winter, and they are probably more resistant to very cold. But again, I doubt it was the cold that did this, since much of the seed garlic we get is grown well up in Canada.

Here are those huge shallots I dug up. The largest weighed over 5.5 oz, and about half of them are over 4.5 oz. I'll have to find some Burmese recipes for these, or make nam prik pao, and things like that that use a lot of shallots.

Image

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 Post subject: Re: For those planting garlic this year...
PostPosted: Thu Nov 06, 2014 1:25 am 
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I got the garlic and shallots in for next season! I planted Estonian red from last season's crop, since few places have it, and the prices were ridiculous! I got 10 more cloves planted than last season, and, again, they were HUGE! And they seem to be storing as well as my old favorites - music and metechi. This year I have 144 total, so I'll have fewer shallots (I always fill up the double row with shallots, after the garlic goes in), but I shouldn't be in need of garlic!

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