Purple Stripe: Hardneck - not braidable
Named because of the bright purple streaks and blotches on both bulb wrappers & clove skins, these are the most attractive looking garlics. They are also very flavorful, usually winning "best baked garlic" taste tests conducted by Rodale, Sunset Magazine, Martha Stewart and others.
Most strains have 8 to 12 cloves per bulb (more than Rocambole) so clove size is slightly smaller. Cloves are noticeably tallish and crescent shaped. They store slightly longer than Rocamboles & peel almost as easily.
Purple Stripe plants are distinctive from Rocamboles because their leaves grow at wider angles to the stem. Flower stalks may make perfect 270 degree curls that leave bulbil capsules floating and bobbing in the air like birds in flight. Plant height & shape vary of individual strains vary significantly. Stores approximately 6 months.
One pound of Standard Purple Stripe seed garlic will yield approximately 60 plants, though this number may vary widely.
Glazed Group - a sub-variety of Purple Stripe
Glazed Purple Stripe includes five beautiful strains that appear Purple Stripe in all respects except that bulb and clove colors are a royal purple tinged with subtle shiny gold and/or silver hues. Cloves are not as tall and elongated as standard Purple Stripes and there are fewer cloves per bulb. They mature slightly sooner than standard Purple Stripes. One pound of glazed purple stripe cloves will produce approximately 60 plants, though this number may vary widely.
Marbled Group - a sub-variety of Purple Stripe
These are an interesting and enigmatic group. While the plants are more similar to Purple Stripes, the bulbs can easily be mistaken for Rocamboles. When broken apart, the bulbs display characteristics of both Rocamboles and Purple Stripes. However, isozyme testing put them within the Purple Stripe variety.
Bulb wrappers tend to be mottled rather than striped. Most strains have only 4 to 7 cloves per bulb which can be easily counted without removing bulb wrappers. Storage is slightly longer than either Rocambloes or standard Purple Stripes. One pound of Marbled Purple Stripe seed garlic will produce somewhere in the vicinity of 55 plants, though this number may vary widely.