Growing Garlic 101

Posted on October 30, 2013. Filed under: Food Made Simple, Plants | Tags: , , , |

Plants - Garlic 1Now is the time!  Go to the farmer’s market and buy some garlic bulbs.  Break them apart.  Put the pointier end up and the flatter part down – about 2 inches down and about 3 inches apart.  Cover with the plentiful leaves that are everywhere right now and forget about them!

I planted about 50 plants the other day.  It’s supposed to rain tomorrow.  Perfect.

Plants - Garlic 2Now they will grow their roots.  All winter they will settle in and get comfortable,   readying themselves for the spring that is certain to come!

Plants - Garlic 3In spring they will steadily grow to about 3 feet tall.  Come June they will produce flowers, called scapes, which I will cut off to sauté and enjoy like asparagus.  And by mid-July the greens will be about halfway dried up.  Time to harvest!  I then dig them out, hack off the tops and place them in a box to cure in the basement.  Then I’ll be eating and re-planting next fall.  Easy peasy!  Garlic is extremely healthy, it’s a great first crop for anyone, even kids, because it is super successful (no pests bother it really) and it’s yummy!

I got a good question on facebook:  What do you mean by cure?

Here’s the answer:  Cure is for root vegetables like sweet potatoes and garlic that benefit from a drying time which is why I put them in the basement near my dehumidifier.  You can eat the garlic fresh, but curing the bulk of it by just letting it rest and dry for about a month will make it keep longer/better.  Some people bundle it together by the stalks and hang it up for good air circulation during the curing time.  It also stops all the growing and readies it for planting.  Thank you to Glenda for the question!

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