This year I planted three varieties of garlic:
- Inchelium Red – An artichoke garlic I picked this for a couple of reasons. I used to work in Okanogan county which is near Inchelium, on the Colville Indian Reservation. The garlic also apparently scored high in taste test contests according to Filaree Farms which states that “In a 1990 taste test at Rodale kitchens this one was a top rated softneck.” It has four to five clove layers with 8 to 20 cloves.
- Chesnok – I personally really liked the flavor of this last year when I had some extra seed garlic. It is a purple stripe garlic with large bulbs averaging 9-10 cloves. Good for baking with a creamy texture.
- Music – I have heard really good things about this variety and wanted to try it out.
Filaree states this garlic produces very large bulbs and is a strong, robust plant that stands out in the garden. A sweet and substantial garlic when baked. Hot when consumed raw.
My conclusions regarding garlic this year
All three did well. We had a mild winter in the Pacific Northwest and an early warm dry summer. The Music variety grew really well even though I planted it probably a month later than the other two (Chesnok and Inchelium I got from Filaree Farms, but the Music I got from someone else). The Music was huge, the scapes were big and flavorful, and when I harvested they produces big bulbs that stuck together well. The Chesnok was also large but I think I waited a tad too long to harvest as a couple of the bulbs are starting to split. A couple of the Chesnock were huge so I will use them as seed garlic next year. And the Inchelium is large for a softneck variety. Production was okay… but the place I had them at was partially shaded by other plants which may have affected the number of bulbs that matured.
Next year’s garlic order from Filaree:
From the Filaree website it states it’s a Rocambole from Idaho with an original source unknown. It’s one of their best producing Rocambole and is better adapted to wet conditions than most other garlic. Although we have had a super dry summer the prediction is for a wet and cold winter so perhaps this garlic will do well.
This garlic is vigorous, producing large bulbs with pure white bulb-wrappers and often contains as many as 7 large fat cloves. It is a porcelain strain historically grown in Iowa but appears to be the same variety as the German White (or German Stiffneck) that is a popular standard with Northeast growers. I had actually wanted the German white but it was sold out in all the places I usually look for to buy garlic. So I am taking a chance that this one is the same or similar enough to the German white.