Increased profits for sustainably produced garlic
Garlic is a profitable crop for small to medium-sized vegetable farmers. Despite the increasing market for specialty garlics it is remarkable how little is known about the diverse types of garlic available in the U.S. Farmers need to know which garlic types perform well under their growing conditions, and they need reliable descriptors to publicize these types to their customers. This project has tested the performance of 10 garlic cultivars in 12 locations for two years. The garlic provided by the grower participants has been evaluated for yield, color, elemental composition, total phenolic content, and other key phenotypic characteristics. We have identified traits that are consistent across locations that could serve as cultivar identifiers as well as traits that are location-dependent.
The project has also developed a website, where currently all the images from harvested bulbs are posted. The key project leader has spoken personally with over 500 people about the project in 2007. The key project leader and two project growers were active participants in the Hudson Valley Garlic Festival in 2007 where they presented four talks about the project and had a booth and demonstrations available for the entire festival. The festival had 60,000 attendees.
We will increase the yield, quality and uniformity of garlic produced by market gardeners and small to medium scale farms. In the Northeast, the number of garlic growers will increase by 10% (60 growers) and profits will increase by 25% for 300 of the current garlic producers. Nationally, 100 growers will begin garlic production and 2500 current growers will have increased yields by growing garlic varieties best suited to their regional environments.
1) September 2004: PI and Key Project Leader met with garlic growers in Geneva, NY to discuss project proposal and determine priority research areas: Completed.
2) Summer 2006: Garlic growers participating in the Northeast SARE grant harvest their first
year experimental crop and data is tabulated: Completed.
3) Fall 2006: Public views the website that lists growth protocols detailed for each grower. Preliminary results are presented at outreach forums (Garlic Seed Foundation sponsored events (>50 attendees), Garlic Festivals (>4000 attendees), Garlic is Life Symposium (>50 attendees) and through written documents (Garlic Press, circ. 1200):Completed.
4) Summer 2007: Garlic growers harvest second year crop and data is tabulated: Completed.
5) Fall 2007: Garlic enthusiasts find out results from the first multi- location, multi-variety: Completed in summer 2008 when the garlic research trial is in the Garlic Press (circ. 1200), a scientific journal (such as HortScience, available at libraries worldwide), and through press releases distributed to newspapers, gardening magazines, farm newsletters, as well as posted on the website. Results are presented at scientific meetings as well as a minimum of six public outreach forums throughout the northeast (>5000 attendees).
6) Summer 2008: Follow-up conversations with new growers that have contacted project personnel as well as survey of garlic growers: In progress.
7) The number of garlic growers will increase by 10% (60 growers) and profits will increase by 25% for 50% of the current garlic producers. In addition, nationally 100 growers will begin garlic production and 2500 current growers will have increased yields by growing garlic varieties best suited to their regional environments.
Impacts and Contributions/Outcomes
The results from the multi-year variety trial were recently submitted for publication in Journal of the American Society for Horticultural Science. Once accepted, the results will also be made publicly available through the popular press (Garlic Press, www.bignewsforgarlic.com website, etc…). The results were also presented orally at the American Society for Horticultural Science meetings in Orlando, Florida, July, 2008. Outreach activities are ongoing.
Volk GM, Stern D. Environmentally stable phenotypic traits of 10 garlic cultivars. 2008. JASHS. Submitted 9-19-08
Volk GM, Stern D. 2008. Regional specificity of diverse garlic cultivars. To be submitted to JASHS. Submitted 9-19-08
Volk G, Rosen C, Allan D, O’Callaghan A, Zandstra J, Stern D. 2008. Regional specificity of genetically diverse garlic varieties. HortScience 43:1109-1110.
Garlic Seed Foundation
Rose Valley Farm
Rose, NY 14542
Office Phone: 3155879787