Monday, January 18, 2010

Harvest Monday - The stinking rose

I'm baaack. After almost year long (has it been that long?) break from posting Harvest Monday, my enthusiasm has been revived by Daphne Dandelion's tireless efforts to promote this meme. It has collected a great group of gardeners just as I had hoped.

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A bouquet of the enigmatic veggie: garlic. This is hard necked garlic which grows best around here and is great for holding bouquet style. I see a flower arranger's trend developing here...

Garlic has always been on the top of my list of vegetables to grow because it is so easy to cultivate around here. My growing style has evolved a lot since I first stuck some California 'Silverskins' into the ground one spring. Bet you can guess what I do differently now. First off, they go in the ground in the fall and secondly, I've sourced all my garlic locally. The easiest way has been for me to pick them up at the Carp Garlic Festival, which is generally held in August. For several years now, I have treated them like the true perennial that they are, and have replanted the best looking cloves for next year's harvest. This has led to an increase in the size and quality of the bulbs.

This is one veggie that works wonderfully in the 0 mile diet plan (expression borrowed from Salt Spring Seeds - very good West Coast Canadian seed company). It doesn't take up too much room to grow and providing you choose the right varieties, stores so well that it can last you until next year's harvest.

I'll spare you the tutorial on how to grow, harvest and store garlic because it seems like a more appropriate subject for fall - I know, the suspense! Here are some links to keep you busy in the meantime.

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Garlic Growers of Ontario
Variegated Serpent Garlic
Mas du Diablo - tells you about growing and harvesting alliums
Overview of Garlic Varieties - lots of info!
Bifucated Carrot blog trials garlic

4 comments:

Stefaneener said...

Mmmmmmmmm, garlic. Such a critical foodstuff, really. Oh! Maybe I'll make a bowl of garlic soup today. That would be warming in the rain, I bet.

Daphne said...

I couldn't live without my garlic. I just adore it. It doesn't quite rank up there with onions (which go in most savory dishes that I make), but it is pretty close.

None of my garlic started out local (but does it qualify after the first year?). I really wanted to pick some up from the farmers market the year I started growing it, but there wasn't any for sale. I was so sad. This year I saw it all over the place including a dedicated garlic seller that came for a few times.

Dan said...

Nothing better then garlic fresh from the ground, it is so crunchy! Wish I had more space to grow it.

Michelle said...

I love garlic! It won't be too long before I can start pulling green garlic. And then the fresh bulbs won't be far behind. Funny, I don't think I had garlic until I was in my 20's, my mother NEVER cooked with it. Now I can barely cook without it.