Softneck garlic is the term used for a grouping of garlic varieties that grow a smaller stalk above ground that does not have a hard central core, as do those garlics in the other major group of garlic, called “hardneck.”
Softneck garlics have larger bulbs than hardneck garlics. The bulbs don’t have as much coloration as those of hardneck garlic types do, but they do tend to have more cloves per bulb, up to 40, arranged in layers. The cloves tend to be harder to peel that those from hardneck garlics.
The taste tends to be either very mild, or very hot: softneck garlics don’t have the range of flavours that hardneck ones do.
The plants will, however, grow better in warmer climates, and the garlic bulbs store better, up to 8 months.
Softneck garlics are also easier to braid owing to their stalk not being hard.
Subgroups include Silverskin and Artichoke.
Softneck garlic evolved from hardneck garlic.
“Sativum” in the scientific name means “cultivated.”