Thursday, July 12, 2012

Garlic Harvest

I can't remember if I posted this photo of scapes- looking at my record of posting latley I think not
here's what the scapes looked like when we cut them and ate them in pasta a few weeks ago
they were super delicious, and really cool looking.

the brown lower leaves and tips of the plants.

the larger white papered bulb is a hardneck variety- and the other smaller reddish bulbs are from
the store bought eating garlic- which proved to be a softneck variety (no scapes).

The other day I noticed the garlic looked a bit rough- like it was drying out- so I got to google and checked out when to harvest garlic and it turns out that when the bottom leaves dry out it's ready to harvest. We were skeptical- I thought it would take longer to grow, so we dug up one plant and sure enough it was ready.

We planted it in the fall some bought as garlic for seed Hardneck varieties that would produce nice scapes- and some just leftover garlic we had bought too much of (most of the garlic in the stores is soft necked varieties- which keep longer than hardneck) - both grew pretty nice sized bulbs, nothing huge, but it is a very dry year I imagine they could have grown bigger-or maybe for a longer time- if we'd been more diligent about watering.

At any rate I suppose they did have a good two month growing season as they were up early this spring in April. I can't wait to try them and see if they've got any strength to them. The next step is drying them, they need a three to four week cure period before they gain flavour and store for any length of time- they need to be kept dry and somewhat cool with good ventilation and low humidity- which will be interesting to try to achieve in this weather.  I'll keep you posted about how they taste when they're done curing, but for now it's nice to have some sort of harvesting done early, very rewarding.

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