|Seed garlic (L) and cooking garlic (R)|
Another important task is selecting good seed garlic. When you sow garlic, you plant individual garlic cloves. The bigger the clove, the bigger the head of garlic to be grown. Many farmers who grow garlic will sell their smaller heads to cooking customers and keep their larger heads (about 2.5") for planting. The picture here shows seed garlic and one of its large cloves on the left and garlic purchased at the farmer's market and one of its medium cloves on the right. Besides difference in size, there is also a huge difference in price: seed garlic goes for $15 per pound, while market garlic is usually $3-$6 per pound.
So we sourced our seed garlic from three places: a local farm in Westchester County who sold us seed garlic of the Porcelain Music variety; an organic seed garlic source in Vermont who sold us various varieties (Belarus - Marbled Purple Stripe, Georgia Fire - Porcelain and Killarney Red - Rocombole); and our local farmer's market who sold us cooking (not seed) German Stiffneck. We hope to plant these varieties with friends and family at our upcoming October-fiesta.