I’m a little late on the garlic planting this year (it should have been done in October), but the ground hasn’t frozen yet so it’s all good. I’m replanting garlic that I grew last year and hopefully increasing my stock! Here’s what it looked like when I pulled it up in the summer:
A couple of things to know about garlic (especially in our cool and damp northwest climate)
- You can’t plant your local supermarket garlic (well you could, it just won’t grow). Typically our garlic comes from china, which has a very different growing climate. Look for a Russian garlic variety. I bought mine at a local farmer’s market that was selling them, but most garden centers will only sell viable varieties, if you want to be sure.
- Each garlic clove produces a whole new head, which is fantastic. So carefully separate all of the cloves (trying to leave the paper intact) and plant about 4-5″ deep, 6″ apart. The bigger the clove the bigger the head of garlic, so make sure you save all the biggest ones for planting. In the summer, watch them sprout, enjoy the delicious garlic scapes (the flowering stem and head of the plant), which can be cooked up in a variety of ways, and then wait for your garlic to finish! When hung to dry (ours is pictured below hanging in our pantry), they last well in storage and can be enjoyed all winter long.
Fun fact about garlic: aphids hate the smell of garlic, so if you are willing to mess around with your landscaping a little bit, garlic is a wonderful plant to tuck in and amongst rose bushes and other plants that are prone to aphid attacks.
Now it’s onto my long list of Christmas crafts I have planned. It’s only the end of November but I’m already feeling crunched for time! Wish me luck!