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Hardneck Garlic is a distinct variety of Allium sativum, best suited for cool to cold climates. It is ideally planted in the fall, about 4-6 weeks before the first hard frost. The soil should be well-drained and loamy with a pH level between 6.0 and 7.0. When planting, space the cloves 4-6 inches apart in rows and ensure they receive full sun for at least 6-8 hours per day. Watering should be moderate; avoid waterlogging the soil.
A balanced fertilizer is recommended at the time of planting and again in mid-spring. Hardneck Garlic is relatively resistant to pests and diseases, but it’s good to keep an eye out for aphids and fungal diseases. Harvest occurs when the leaves turn yellow, usually in late spring to early summer. Unlike Softneck varieties, Hardneck Garlic is not ideal for long-term storage and should be kept in a cool, dry place. One unique feature of this variety is that it produces an edible flowering stalk called a “scape.”