Monday, October 10, 2011

Garlic Planting

Part of the fun of gardening for me is trying to grow something new each year. This year I wanted to give garlic a try. I LOVE garlic but recently spent $10 for 8 heads at our Farmer's Market. Yikes! So this Saturday I visited Down-to-Earth to have a look at their garlic selection. Jackpot! I have said it before and I will say it again - we are so lucky to have this store in our town.

They had 17 -yes 17 -organic varieties to choose from. They also had one free pamphlet explaining how to plant garlic and another free pamphlet describing each variety in-depth. After much consideration, I narrowed down the field to 3 finalists: "Chesnok Red", "Nootka Rose", and "Silver Rose". Here is the description of each from the pamphlet:

"Chesnok Red" Hardneck : Large bulbs with purple stripes, hard tight heads, and easy to peal cloves. An excellent garlic for baking with a nice creamy texture. Pleasant medium pungency, long lasting flavor. Late Season.

"Nootka Rose" Softneck: Nootka Rose is a well colored variety with the potential for high productivity. The cloves are streaked red on mahogany. Nootka Rose makes an attractive braiding garlic and has a robust flavor for a softneck. Late Season.

"Silver Rose: Softneck: Silver Rose boasts large bulbs with purple stripes. It is an easy to peal garlic with hard, tight heads. A great baking garlic, Silver Rose has a creamy texture and long lasting flavor. Mid Season.

 "Pictured from left to right; "Chesnok Red", "Nootka Rose" and "Silver Rose".

Here is an individual clove of "Chesnok Red' waiting to be planted. Both the bulb and the individual cloves were tinted with such a lovely red/purple color.

I built a raised row to plant the garlic in and then laid out all of the cloves. Per the instructions, I added 1 Tbs. of Bone Meal to each planting hole and then in they went, pointed end up! Then I watered them in well. That should be it for a while. I think that I will see some green shoots appear before our weather turns cold. If so, I will have to cover the row with remay to give the young plants some protection from the birds. Now it's time to sit back, watch, and learn.


Robin said...

You are lucky indeed to have such a great store! The garlic will do just fine. It's not hard to grow.

Green Bean said...

Just in time! I need to get my garlic in soon and it is also my first year. I hadn't a clue how to start. Now I do. Thank you!

Urban Gardens said...

Sounds like a great store! This is our first year for planting garlic too. Good luck!