Garlic Harvest 2008

Tuesday, June 24, 2008
Garlic fresh from the ground, 6/22/08

The squeak of the pantry door as I reach for the bowl. The rustle of nature-made paper surrendering to hungry hands. The sound of steel knife in a quick, crushing blow to clove on wood. Thwack! Another meal begins with garlic.

This past weekend we harvested the garlic we planted last fall. It's not the best crop of garlic we've grown -- not by any means -- but it's our own garlic. And it beats store-bought any day.

"Small is better than none at all" is turning out to be the theme of our gardening experience this year. Given that we really need to improve our soil, we're keeping our expectations in check. Puny little garlic heads they are, but they are better than none at all.

This fall, some of our first compost should be ready to put in, and we're planning to grow winter cover crops as well. That should help with the soil situation. Feed the soil and it will feed us loads more garlic - next year. For now, small is bliss. Garlic is one of my all-time favorite things to grow.

17 Comments:

Blogger Dayna said...

congrats that is really exciting. we are growing some and hope to harvest soon - maybe in a few weeks. this photo has me really looking forward to our first harvest. enjoy!

9:50 PM  
Anonymous Mike Licht said...

Do you know the film Garlic is as Good as Ten Mothers?

http://www.lesblank.com/more/garlic.html

There are some excerpts on YouTube:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6-Kptp6u4JQ

www.youtube.com/watch?v=EDHbDqBcNak

10:03 PM  
OpenID coffeepot said...

My garlic was pitiful this year. Yours looks great.

3:40 AM  
Blogger Christina said...

Hooray for garlic. I had a mixed crop too this year; some varieties grew beautifully and some not so much. I'm beginning to learn what thrives in my microclimate. What variety did you grow?

12:14 PM  
Blogger jodi said...

It's so satisfying to harvest something you've grown yourselF!! I'm amazed that your garlic is ready already, but then everyone is ahead of me...

10:24 PM  
OpenID nikkipolani said...

Hey, that looks like a pretty good harvest! Do you find home-grown garlic to be more intense?

2:19 PM  
Anonymous Sarah B. said...

My garlic is not so great as well.
Do you sort your cloves for planting in the fall, or order fresh each year?
I'm worried whether my pitiful garlic this year will affect my garlic next season or whether it can grow out of it.

7:56 PM  
Blogger lkw said...

Fresh garlic is so amazingly tasty -- definitely a winner. Glad you had a nice crop -- enjoy it while it's fresh.

I had an excellent harvest this year, at least the 'main' crop which had good spring rains, with much smaller heads just harvested. We plant in the fall here in the SE and harvest in late May and June. I'm trying to figure out how to store all of mine for awhile.

9:43 PM  
Anonymous Liz said...

They look alright to me! I find that they can be much tastier when they are smaller We have grown elephant garlic for the last two years which is impressive in size but very mild in taste.

12:39 PM  
Blogger Ottawa Gardener said...

It seems to be garlic harvest post season. Your garlic looks pretty good. Interestingly, the heads of most of my garlic were a bit smaller than I expected as well and I can't blaim it on our similar climes!

9:25 PM  
Blogger Muum said...

I have had the same experience with garlic, and other things. That's one reason I looove compost!

9:21 AM  
Blogger Aiyana said...

I've never grown garlic, or tasted fresh garlic, only the little bulbs from the grocery store. I am tempted to grow some just to get to taste fresh garlic after reading your post!
Aiyana

6:08 AM  
Anonymous Garden Grrrl said...

You are already harvesting garlic? I guess it is July now...I'm used to waiting as long as possible, hoping for larger heads.

2:40 AM  
Anonymous Patrick said...

To me it seems like you probably harvested your garlic a few weeks too early, and that may be why it was a little on the small side. Do you usually harvest around now? I usually harvest around the end of July.

Also garlic is very sensitive to weeds, so if your garden was weedy this would also make it smaller. Saved and replanted garlic also usually grows bigger because it is acclimated to your garden. I don't know if you buy new planting stock each year.

2:34 PM  
Blogger Jane Marie said...

I planted ONE garlic this year just as an experiment. I just harvested mine also and it looks the same size as yours. I'm thrilled just the same. I'm definitly going to look for more space and try a row next year.

6:43 AM  
Blogger Square Foot Hammer said...

Good for you. My first attempt at growing garlic this year also resulted in small heads, but like you, I've decided small is better than nothing. And after all, I grew it!

And I can't want until I get a chance to use them. Just mix with some olive oil, and spread onto something before BBQ'ing it. Yum!

4:27 PM  
Blogger Matron said...

Your garlic looks great! Will look wonderful when you have it stringed up. For some reason I have real difficulty growing garlic. Just ends up the size of an acorn!

4:38 AM  

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