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Garlic surprise!

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Garlic surprise!

Post  Icemaiden on 2/15/2011, 10:28 am

Back at the start of October I planted some cloves of garlic in a couple of squares. Then when it got cold I covered them up with some old coldframes which I "edited" to fit over my 4x4.
I've looked at the half which holds the strawberry plants and the herbs, just to check they were still there Laughing
Today, for some reason, I checked the other half and found sprouts of garlic!!! And some of them have more than one green shoot so there is some hope that I will get bulbs rather than big cloves, isn't there?
This is what they look like:


I gave them a bit of water and covered them up again. Hoping for the best here. I've never grown garlic before.

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Re: Garlic surprise!

Post  quiltbea on 2/15/2011, 10:34 am

Wow, what a great find. There's nothing like being greeted with the first greening of the spring and summer crops.
Lucky you.

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Garlic Surprise

Post  Nonna.PapaVino on 2/15/2011, 5:32 pm

Congratulations, Icemaiden, on your garlic-raising! What variety did you plant? Garlic is a marvelously satisfying crop. I shall keep an eye on your experience, especially since your sprouts are the same height of some of ours here in Western Oregon. It'll be interesting to see when you start harvesting them. Way to go! Nonna, St. Helens, OR

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Re: Garlic surprise!

Post  Icemaiden on 2/16/2011, 4:15 am

Thanks for the encouragement! I planted two "sorts"... one from the supermarket and I know that came from China, and one organic one from the health store Rolling Eyes

I have seen garlic in the garden shop at the same time as the onion sets but it just does not work to plant garlic here in May and hope fro a crop!

I'm thinking that next time I go to the UK (or Italy if I am so lucky) then I could bring back something more exciting. Last summer I went to a food fair in England and they had all sorts of garlic on sale.

I watched a youtube video yesterday and a guy said it was good to plant the whole bulb in the autumn and then pull it apart and re-plant the rooted cloves in the spring. Does anyone do that?

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Re: Garlic surprise!

Post  Nonna.PapaVino on 2/16/2011, 9:17 am

@Icemaiden wrote:I watched a youtube video yesterday and a guy said it was good to plant the whole bulb in the autumn and then pull it apart and re-plant the rooted cloves in the spring. Does anyone do that?

Interesting idea, but after raising garlic for many years with consistently good results (we give braids of softneck garlic away as gifts, and hardneck types for general good eating), I'm not sure the re-planting technique would work here in Oregon. Do you know where the guy lived who practiced the re-planting? I'd worry that the minute root "hairs" would be destroyed in the separating/replanting, which would set the individual plants back enough that the heads would be smaller as a result. In the early fall, we plant the largest cloves from the selected heads of garlic, putting a covering of compost over the planting. Then, I mark March 25 on the upcoming calender as a reminder to side-dress the plants by working in a little fertilizer alongside each plant. Our local extension agent recommends a high-nitrogen organic fertilizer, such as blood meal. Then fertilize again just before the bulbs begin to swell in response to lengthening daylight (here, around mid-May). That's it, except for weeding the bed. Depending on the variety of garlic, we begin harvesting around the end of June and continue through mid-July as the different varieties mature. Whew, that's too long a post. Happy growing! Nonna, St. Helens, OR

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Re: Garlic surprise!

Post  Lavender Debs on 2/16/2011, 9:27 am

I thought that was a great post (for what it's worth) Nonna. Very helpful.

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Re: Garlic surprise!

Post  Ha-v-v on 2/16/2011, 9:32 am

@Lavender Debs wrote:I thought that was a great post (for what it's worth) Nonna. Very helpful.

I second that !! It was so informative Smile
Ha-v-v

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Re: Garlic surprise!

Post  Icemaiden on 2/16/2011, 12:23 pm

Thanks for that Nonna. You obviously know what you are doing which makes one of us Laughing

What happened with the whole garlic thing was... I was listening to Gardeners Question Time which is a BBC radio programme (I get podcasts on my ipod when I feel homesick) and someone asked if it was too late to plant garlic. One of the experts said that if it was late in the year then he planted it as a whole head, but did not go into detail.

Well, that reminded me of Middlemamma (I think) who tried that by mistake last summer. So I googled a bit to see if it was possible to plant the whole thing and found this video:
http://www.ehow.com/video_4976217_planting-spring-gardens-propagating-garlic.html

I can't tell from his accent where he is likely to be gardening, perhaps you can? The garlic he has seems to have masses of roots and he is not being at all gentle.

I showed my son the garlic shoots today and he said that it had clearly come up way too early and would just die before it had chance to grow properly Sad

Oh well, it is a bit of a cheap gamble. It is not like the garlic cost very much and we might get a nice summer. If I get any crop at all then I will let you all know.

I can't get blood meal here. I used to be able to get bone meal but they stopped when mad cow disease came up. Would dried chicken manure be OK? The only other thing here is dried seaweed and that is high phosphorous isn't it?

Really grateful for any advice. Thanks a lot.

PS Just looked at one of the other videos and it is from Laughing Dog Farm, in Gill, MA. Which hopefully means more to you than it does to me!

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