Artichoke is a softneck garlic named for its appearance: several overlapping layers of cloves arranged similarly to an artichoke.
Very vigorous, it can have up to 20 irregularly-shaped cloves per bulb ranging from large to very small.
It stores well, but as a result is more difficult to peel because the skins are coarse and thick. We've found that the best device to remove the skins is a silicone garlic peeler.
The attractive bulbs are usually off-white with some purple splotches. They are perfect for braiding and store longer than most hardneck varieties — up to 8 months, even a year.
Locally grown Artichoke garlic is delicious. Eaten fresh from the ground it is juicy with a mild flavour.
If you like to eat raw garlic but don't appreciate the heat, this might be the variety for you.