Whether you’re looking for hardneck or softneck garlic, there are a number of reasons you may want to buy heirloom garlic. If you’re looking to grow your own garlic at home, you’ll need a varietal that is fit for whatever climate you might be in. You also might just be looking for an option that has a more robust flavor than they types you’ll find at your local grocery store.
A few places to buy heirloom garlic are:
- Seed or gardening store
- Direct from farm - visit farmer’s market or call them directly
What to consider when buying garlic seed
If you’re looking to grow your own garlic at home, you’ll want to make sure you find a type that works in your specific growing zone. That means that buying from a farm or store in your region of the country is often the best option.
Once you're sure the type of garlic you want will grow in your area, it's worth making sure you're buying from a reputable farm. High quality farms will make sure they're testing their garlic bulbs after they're harvested to make sure they're free of mold, disease, and pests. That way, you can make sure you're planting healthy seed garlic, increasing your likelihood of a successful crop.
You may also want to request a certain size bulb if you're going to be planting it. A large garlic bulb is a good indicator that it's cloves have the potential to yield large bulbs in the future. There's nothing wrong with planting small clove or cloves from small bulbs, but larger garlic can help improve your yield.
Buying for culinary use
Heirloom garlic has a stronger, more complex flavor than that type you'll typically find at the grocery store. Unlike seed garlic, the garlic you can get away with buying smaller garlic bulbs to cook with. A major benefit of hardneck garlic is that you don't need as much in your dish since the flavor is more pronounced.
Again, an important consideration here is whether or not the bulbs have been tested. It's possible for bulbs to get mold or pests that make them unfit for culinary use.
If you're looking to purchase hardneck garlic for seed or cooking in the upper midwest, please visit our shop!