Garlic (Allium sativum) Estonian Red (Estisk rød) stored under the eaves since harvest

I have always kept my garlics at room temperature after they were harvested and dried out. It works fine for me. Now I’ve seen that garlic can be stored under very different circumstances with equally good results. Ida and Finn on Zealand has successfully retained their garlic under the eaves all winter.

It is said that garlic sprouts particularly rapidly at temperatures between 4C and 10C, and root sprouts at high humidity. And I think it is true, just perhaps a little more complex.
Maybe garlic is sensitive to fluctuations in temperature and humidity in the air, so it inhibits sprouting. If garlic was beneath the earth where it makes sense to sprout, conditions would be much more stable. A garlic in nature ending up on a stone, has a better chance to survive if the sprouting process may be delayed until wind, water or an animal relocate it onto some soil. This is of course pure speculation, but without the speculation we do not get ideas for new practice we can try out.

Root end swelling on garlic

The bulbs are large, I have not seen any garlic clone growing larger in Denmark than Estonian red. In the picture you can see how the root end of the cloves have swelled due to roots preparing to grow out, although slowly. Ida says that there are tiny green sprouts in the cloves a this point. At this time of year the quality compares store bought garlic. Throughout autumn and winter the quality is superior. Home grown garlic tastes great! Eating raw garlic this becomes very clear.

Garlic Estonian Red (Estisk rød)

Estonian Red has few but very large cloves easy to peel. No wonder it is popular among those who have tried it in Danish kitchen gardens.