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Ted and his garlic hat are well-known at garlic festivals (photos by Lucy Martin)
Ted and his garlic hat are well-known at garlic festivals (photos by Lucy Martin)

Ted Maczka the "Fish Lake Garlic Man"

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Ted Maczka is known in gardening circles as the "Fish Lake Garlic Man".

Maczka was born in Poland in 1928. He survived World War II and a crippling injury in a slave labor camp before coming to Canada to work as a tool and die machinist in the 1950's. In the 1970's Maczka bought land in Ontario's Prince Edward County where he worked to develop better varieties of garlic for the region. He's been sharing garlic advice ever since.

Maczka was a featured speaker at the Perth Garlic Festival this past August. Lucy Martin caught up with him there.

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Maczka has spent decades developing improved varieties of garlic

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Reported by

Lucy Martin
Ottawa Correspondent

"Ted the Garlic Man. In Polish, it's Tadeusz Maczka [pronounced Tedahush Mazka]. In English, they just, Maczka, they call me. Ted, I abbreviated from Tadeusz because that's my full name, is."

"I found it very hard to find the information on garlic in the 70's, early 80's. I'm self-educated and I've been researching, looking for better quality, better yields in the garlic. I'm looking at the garlic as a healing and preventative medicine."

"We live in the greedy society. The drug companies don't want healthy people. They want to sell their drugs and keep people sick and sell them more drugs. Garlic is not a cure-all, but garlic can prevent a lot of sicknesses. Thin the blood, natural antibiotic, antiseptic. We can grow best garlic in the world."

Lucy Martin: Ted, are you going to keep doing this?

"It's getting harder and harder to, you know? But, so long as I am alive, I will be doing it and spreading the gospel. Encourage people to grow their own. And then they know what they eat. Because maybe I am just a one crazy man. But – as I always say – you have to use your brain, and you can do miracles, to help humanity."

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