Artichoke Garlic, Red Toch

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ARTICHOKE GARLIC, Red Toch – Allium sativum var. sativum

FULL SUN Native to south-central Asia, garlic was probably domesticated from a single variety, Allium longicuspis, thousands of years ago. Today the plant is grown on every continent except Antarctica. Red Toch was discovered near the town of Tochliavri in the Republic of Georgia in 1988 by Dr. Peter Hanelt. This beautiful, mildly flavored garlic has cloves streaked with red and pink.

Garlic is best when planted in the fall, but can be planted in the spring as soon as the ground can be worked. If planting in the fall, plant 30 days before the ground freezes and mulch with straw or alfalfa hay if possible. Garlic must have some exposure to cold for several weeks or it will not bulb. Amend the soil with potash and phosphate before planting. Plant the cloves 1-2 in. deep and 4-6 in. apart in rows separated by 12-18 in.

Harvest in mid-summer when 2/3 of the stalk has turned brown or yellow. Dig the bulbs from the soil with stalks attached. Cure in a dry, shaded area with lots of air circulation for 4-6 weeks. Stalks can then be removed from the bulbs.

Type Spacing Planting Depth Days to Germination Maturity
Softneck 4-6 in. 1-2 in. 14-21+ 180-270

Artichoke Garlic, Red Toch

” Garlic, which is a member of the same group of plants as the onion, has been cultivated for millennia. As a cultivated plant, it is so old that it is difficult to credit a country of origin for this vegetable. All modern garlic belongs to one of two subspecies: hardneck (ophioscorodon) or softneck (sativum). Hardneck subspecies try to produce flower stalks with small aerial cloves called bulbils. Hardnecks will not produce large bulbs underground unless the flower stalks are removed. There are three varieties of hardneck garlic: Purple Striped, Porcelain and Rocambole. Softnecks have lost the ability, for the most part, to produce a flower stalk. However, under certain climatic situations, the bulbs may try to produce a flower stalk known as bolting. There are three varieties of softneck garlic: Artichoke, Silverskin and Creole.

Artichoke Garlic, a softneck variety, is so named because the overlapping clove configuration around the bulb resembles an artichoke. The plants are vigorous and the bulbs are large. These garlics usually do not produce a seedhead, but may produce bulbils which will protrude from the lower part of the stem. Generally, Artichoke Garlics have 12-20 mildly flavored cloves. The mild flavor makes them a favorite of individuals who enjoy eating raw garlic. With some strains, the flavor may be intensified by cold winter growing. ”

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