Did you know that garlic is considered one of the world’s healthiest foods and contains many medicinal properties that aid in combating colds, improving cholesterol levels and reducing blood pressure? This close relative of the onion also tastes great and kicks up any soup or sauce recipe.
Garlic varieties are typically separated into two types, commonly referred to as softneck and hardneck. Softneck varieties grow best in climates with milder winters and work great for braiding and storage. They have relatively mild flavors and are the varieties you’ll typically find at grocery stores. Hardneck varieties adapt well to colder winter climates and produce a long flowering stem called a scape, which is popular for cooking. They typically have more complex flavors than softneck that vary from mild, to musky, to hot and spicy. Both types typically perform well here on the Front Range.
Fall is the best time to plant garlic for a big summer harvest, so check out our great selection and make garlic a must-have addition to your fall planting list. Fort Collins Nursery currently has a dozen varieties of garlic to choose from, including hardneck and softneck, bulk and bagged, and mild to melt-your-face hot!
Here are a few suggestions to get you started:
Metechi Garlic: This mid-season, hardneck variety has a marbled, purple skin with firm bulbs and large, fat cloves. Metechi has a fiery hot taste when eaten raw. Cooking it will tone down the heat while still maintaining its big garlic taste.
Music Garlic: This mid-season hardneck is rapidly becoming one of the most popular garlic varieties. The bulbs can be rather large, and the cloves have a beautiful, pink skin. Music is prized for its perky, medium hot, true garlic flavor. It has exceptional shelf life and will store for 9 months to a year.
Idaho Silver Garlic: This softneck variety has creamy silver bulbs with reddish pink cloves. Idaho Silver is hot when eaten raw but turns mild and sweet when baked.
Originally published on September 4th, 2018. Updated on September 30th, 2019.