We are beginning to pull up our garlic. This year has been a little disappointing. I think I could have watered and weeded them a little more often. But that’s okay, I will probably have enough to can with my tomatoes and onions. Next year I will purchase bulbs specifically to plant. I’ve always just used the ones at the grocery store and they’ve done okay. But I think I might get better yields if I plant ones that I know weren’t sprayed with any kind of inhibitor.
Not only does garlic taste great, it also has some amazing vitamins and minerals in it such as magnanese, B1, B6 and C vitamins, calcium, phosphorus, copper and even protein. Garlic is thought to help with high cholesterol and with helping to prevent several kinds of cancer. Garlic also has anti bacterial and anti viral properties. Amazing, right?
See what I mean by weeding and watering?
Gabriel planted the elephant garlic and has done a much better job at tending to it than I have of the regular garlic.
Here’s what I’ve learned about Garlic
- Planting time for our zone is Oct.1 – Nov. 30
- Gently break apart the garlic head to get each clove. Do not “unwrap” the cloves.
- Plant each clove about 2 inches deep and about 3-6 inches apart
- There are softneck and hardneck garlic. Softneck will not send up a flower (called a scape) and is good for braiding. Hardneck is a little harder but will send up a scape and is not good for braiding
- Elephant garlic is a very large head of garlic and has a milder flavor than other garlic
- You will need to cut off the scape for the bulb to grow bigger – the scapes are edible
Pests and Problems
- We really haven’t had any issues with pests and the only problems we have had with garlic is because of not watering and weeding enough.
Harvesting and Storing
- Harvest garlic when when about half of the bottom leaves have died back
- Try not to water for a week or two before harvest
- Hang and let dry completely it might take 2-4 weeks – NOT in the sun
- After they are completely dried out cut off roots and leaves and take off the outer layer of dried skin
- Garlic should be kept in a cool dry place but not in a root cellar or refrigerator