Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Garlic, March Update

      It has been a disappointing winter.  Generally cold, damp and gray.  And hardly a single snow flake.  But very few days when it is enjoyable to be outside puttering in the garden.  So it is a welcome sight that the garlic seems not to care about the gloomy weather, and is making nice progress for a harvest in three to four months time.

Garlic on 3/18/2013, planted 12/14/2012

Music Garlic 3/19/2013, cloves planted 11/16/2012

Red Russian Garlic 3/19/2013, cloves planted 11/16/2012
       The Music and Red Russian garlic planted last November were cloves planted from single bulbs obtained from prior neighbor and gardener Jan Watson.

Each of the plants coming up now should make bulbs of six or more cloves, which will be separated and replanted in the fall of this year, 2013.  So by harvest time of early summer 2014, I should have good crops of both strains.
      The garlic shown above was from small heads of garlic found in the spring of 2012, and planted in this little area to see what would happen.  The plants look good, but small.  They will need to be dug soon, teased apart to separate to individual plants, then replanted on four inch centers.  These may serve as part of my green garlic supply, where you eat the whole young plant instead of waiting for bulb production.
       Two years ago, my garlic supply stored very well for months and months.  I was still eating nice full garlic cloves into May.  The crop for 2012 has been very tasty, but the storage quality has been iffy.  At this point, many of the cloves in bulbs are dry and shriveled.  The rocambole variety however stored very well, but alas, it has been eaten as they were the best bulbs.  The papers of the garlic bulbs of this past harvest were very thin and fragile even when the bulbs were fresh.  I have read that that is an indication that the bulbs will not store well.  And they didn't.
      So luckily, I have tons and tons of young garlic shoots coming up that were started from bulbils.  Some will be used for green garlic, and some will be used for cloves to start next year's crop.

please see: http://fromseedtoscrumptious.blogspot.com/2012/12/umbils-of-garlic.html

Started from garlic umbils 12/14/2012
Closer shot as of March 18th, 2013
      The low growing plant in this picture is chickweed, a wild plant that is quite welcome in a spring salad.  So it won't bee in this garlic bed for very much longer.


  1. Your garlic looks great, George! And so...there is actually a good use for chickweed? I'd be glad to share with anyone who would like some in their salad! :)

  2. It is still looking great George. Long time since I have commented. I help we have a great growing season!


  3. Very nice! I'm enjoying spring through your pictures, we're currently receiving up to 20 cms of the white stuff today. Garlic looks great. Mine seemed to have sprouted earlier than last year, although we ate to the end of our supply about a month ago. I had wanted more garlic for planting than eating in the fall so I didn't have as much to save for the winter months. Next year will be a different story!

  4. I hate to add the verification, but have been too many anon comments that I have to delete. Will see if this helps.