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May 20, 2013 04:28 PM

YYC Garlic

Since moving to Calgary about 3 1/2 years ago the quality and price of garlic has been a pet peeve of mine.

Chinese garlic, incredibly cheap and everywhere is lousy, more often than not sprouted and dry.

The Hutterites have incredible garlic seasonally for a couple of months, but want a ransom for a bulb. Too often I succumb and dig deep.

Superstore a few months ago started selling organic US garlic, and it wasn't too bad, though often approaching its past due (by my reconing) date. I've also noticed organic garlic, looking none too special, at the local designer markets, often priced at a whopping $9.99 per pound!!!!

So, today, went to Superstore and they had Gilroy garlic, beautiful hard, weighty, misshapen, and juicy like fruit for $1.99 per pound! Go there, buy lots, let Superstore know they've done a good thing so they will keep on bringing it in, don't let me slide back into garlic purgatory, please!!!!!

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  1. Once you have had farmers market or garden garlic you realize how old the grocery store garlics are. The amount of juice that comes out of fresh garlic is remarkable!

    I am going to see if my local Extra foods carries this garlic or if they can bring it in. Thanks for the heads up!

    1. Which Superstore do you shop at, Scary Bill?
      I agree. It's not easy to find good garlic in Calgary. I also was mainly seeing the Chinese variety but North hill Coop now has California garlic. I can't say it's the best I've had but it's an improvement.

      2 Replies
      1. re: Beachy1

        I would like to know too. I have only seen Chinese garlic here and it's terrible. I tried growing it but it doesn't seem to work with a short summer like here.

        1. re: josey124

          Josey: a lot of folks have success with growing garlic saying it is very easy. Are you planting them in the fall?

      2. I agree with you about the quality of garilc here. I stock up on fresh and exotic varieties of garlic when I am in the Okanagan in the summer and at farmers markets here in Alberta, but just finished off last years' batch. Can't wait until August.

        Which Superstore?

        1. Whoa!!!!!

          Think I'll keep it a secret..........


          2 Replies
          1. re: Scary Bill

            Thanks! That's the opposite end of town from me but I'll check out a closer one.

            1. re: Beachy1

              Same for me but I am going to check "my" Superstore on Friday

          2. Easy to grow garlic, far superior to anything I've purchased, even from the farmer's markets. Homegrown is sticky with juice, and a small amount goes a long way. My very small patch is about 10 plants and it will last me over the winter. Then, sigh, it's back to grocery store kind. Thanks Bill, I will seek out the Gilroy, until the harvest is ready. Bonus with homegrown: garlic scapes!

            5 Replies
            1. re: tibbles

              Can you please tell me what you do? I mean where you get the bulbs, when you plant etc? I tried several years and never had a real crop of garlic unfortunately. I plant a variety of veggies but somehow I can't figure out garlic.

              1. re: josey124

                I have been buying what I think is rocambole, I look for the largest, firmest cloves, usually the best is at a farmers market. One of the benefits is that buying local garlic you know it will grow well here, not the case with grocery store garlic. In October, I plant the cloves about 6" apart, pointy end up, and put a few inches of dirt on top, nature does the rest. For me, one of the easiest 'crops' I grow: takes very little space, and very little maintenance, a bit of water and weeding. Harvest when the leaves start to brown, mid to late June, or so. And harvest the scapes when you want, they are fantastic stir fried then tossed in pasta primavera.

                1. re: tibbles

                  Cool, thanks! I ordered garlic to plant maybe that was the mistake. Not sure where it came from.
                  Love the scapes, that's all I got so far. Didn't harvest much though because I was afraid it would kill the growing bulb.

                  1. re: josey124

                    Don't worry about that, I take all the scape off, down to the main stem. I've read that removing the scape will make your bulb grow larger.

                    1. re: josey124

                      Garlic gets planted in fall, not now, unless you want scapes, I suppose.

                      You can get garlic for growing at any of the garden centres in town or at Home Depot, Rona, etc.