Giant Garlic

groucho333(z8NV)November 8, 2005

My local garden store has Giant Garlic, only. Is this Elephant Garlic? Is there a difference between the two?

Does anyone know a good source of small quantities of garlic for planting. My space is limited.

What is the best type of strong flavored garlic?

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username_5(banned for no reason)

I suspect, but don't know, that the giant garlic is indeed elephant garlic, which itself is a leek.

Common names, sheesh ;-)

Can't really answer what is the best strong flavored garlic as there are tons of garlics out there and taste is a subjective thing.

A good source for small quantities of garlic is pretty much any online source if you don't have a good local source. Most will sell in units of 1/2lb to 1lb. Just read the descriptions and pick something that sounds good and see what you think of it.

    Bookmark   November 9, 2005 at 1:13PM
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Suggest you find a health food store selling organic garlic and use that. It won't be treated to prevent sprouting and should do fine.

    Bookmark   November 17, 2005 at 1:27AM
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coho(z8/9 N. Calif)

Sorry, I bought some from a Chico, Ca health food store. It took for ever to sprout. Never did grow. I suggest you ask to pay postage for some small quanities on the GW. I have some good unnames varities but they are all planted. Others may still have some in reserve. Most places are sold out this late in the season.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2005 at 8:58PM
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username_5(banned for no reason)

One can plant the elephant garlic found in any old grocery store, no reason I can see to pay the high prices 'seed' vendors are asking. It is the same thing, I don't think there are 'varieties' of elephant garlic.

As far as grocery store stuff being treated to not germinate/sprout I think that is mostly a myth, plenty of people grow things they got at a grocery store and if you think about it, it would just add to the cost to treat produce that 1 in 1000 would actually try to grow.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2005 at 9:50PM
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coho(z8/9 N. Calif)

There a few other "Giant" garlics. One being Kettle River Giant. However Its easy to see the differrence between KRG and Elephant. Normally 4 to 6 large and mostly even sized cloves. KRG cloves are more in number and more un even in size. Most likely what you found are Elephants.
I have planted both Calif White and Elephants from regular grocery store and they did quite well. But I don't bother with CA white anymore. There are much better tasteing garlics. The link below still has two garlics at reduced prices. Elephant at 2.50 Lb and spanish Roja at 3.50 Lb. Normally I trade for what I want, but have purchased here twice. This is very late in the season.

Username, the point of treating garlic and shallots is not to prevent you from planting relativly inexpensive bulbs/cloves, but to make it keep longer. 2 years in a row makes it positive that this health food store had treated bulbs. It was a waste of time and purchase price. I am not saying all stores have treated bulbs, but the one in Chico, Ca does.

Here is a link that might be useful: Order Garlic

    Bookmark   November 20, 2005 at 12:50AM
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username_5(banned for no reason)

2 years in a row makes it positive that this health food store had treated bulbs.

That is interesting. My hypothesis here (completely untested) would be that small stores who do not move the produce as rapidly as larger stores would be more inclined to treat the produce to keep it fresh longer. Regardless of what is used it adds to the cost which would discourage it's use unless the cost of having to discard rotten, unsold produce was higher.

So, niche health food stores may well be more likely to treat produce with various things than a large chain store.

    Bookmark   November 20, 2005 at 1:12AM
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Thanks again to all who have answered my query. I've purchased & planted Garlic and Shallots (from Peaceful Valley). I'm in Las Vegas. Hope it wasn't too late. I'll let you know the outcome.

    Bookmark   November 20, 2005 at 1:22PM
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paquebot(Z-4b WI)

To all of those who continue to insist that stores treat garlic, onions, and potatoes to prevent sprouting, what do they treat it with? My wife has worked for a large supermarket company for 25 or so years. She's still looking for what it is that they are supposed to be spraying on their produce! If so many people here claim to know of it, what is it? A lot of us want to know!


    Bookmark   November 20, 2005 at 10:00PM
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coho(z8/9 N. Calif)

Not sure, Martin, but onion sets in the UK are slow heat treated to prevent seed scapes. At least that what the web sites say. I very carefully monitered the garlic the second time I planted it. Eventually developed very short green tips and still was that way when I harvested everything else. Will ask next time I get there but doubt store does the treatment, And this was three years ago.

    Bookmark   November 21, 2005 at 12:55AM
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coho(z8/9 N. Calif)


About sprout inhibiting chemical treatments.

Potatoes to be stored past January are chemically treated, like garlic often is, to prevent sprouting. The following info describes how this is done. We don't do any of these treatments to our garlic and doubt that you want these chemicals in your food or your seed.

CIPC or Chloroprophan is the active chemical for use in sprout inhibition of potatoes after harvest. An "Aerosol Grade" is applied by professional applicators who thermally generate a fog into the storage building and circulate this fog through the potatoes utilizing the air system of the storage facility. Sprout free conditions can then be maintained for several months with well managed storages. An "Emulsifiable Concentrate" form of CIPC is also available and can be applied by spray on the grading table for fresh pack potatoes to ensure sprout free potatoes as they pass through the marketing chain to the consumer. The "emulsifiable grade" of CIPC is applied as a very fine diluted spray as the potatoes pass over the grading table. Since CIPC residues can be corrosive, the applicator should protect any controls refrigeration coils, during the treatment with plastic.

Seed potatoes must not be exposed to CIPC because even small amounts will have disastrous results on sprouting. Seed potatoes should be held in a separate storage facility that has not been used to store or treat CIPC sprout inhibited potatoes.

Although CIPC has a low toxicity to humans, exposure should be minimized by using protective clothing and avoiding inhalation. Under no circumstances should a bin that is being treated be entered without proper respiratory equipment.

    Bookmark   November 21, 2005 at 1:02AM
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coho(z8/9 N. Calif)

Here is the link. Next one is about heat treating.

Here is a link that might be useful: treating garlic to prevent sprouting

    Bookmark   November 21, 2005 at 1:09AM
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username_5(banned for no reason)

Interesting links, coho, thanks.

As best I can tell from the info at the links none of the methods are particularly effective at preventing them from sprouting in the garden, just delaying it in storage.

I just know too many people who go buy supermarket white garlic and grow the cloves in their gardens to believe grocery store garlic is effectively treated with any regularity. Same with potatos, pepper seeds, root crops etc.

I guess the moral here is that if one sees elephant garlic in the store at an attractive price, there is no harm in using it for planting stock versus paying a premium for the same thing from a seed vendor.

    Bookmark   November 21, 2005 at 1:11PM
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