First garlic harvest

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Well , I got some now , how do I prep it for storage and store it ? Cool dry place , I figure , but I'm not sure how to dry it for storage .
--
Snag



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Keep the tops on, if your dirt is as sticky as mine, wash the bulbs with a garden hose nozzle; spread out on a screen in the shade until dry to the touch. Then tie up in bunches of 25 or so and hang up in the shade (my shed has a bunch of nails in the rafters for this), and let cure for a few weeks. Then trim and enjoy!
--
Gary Woods AKA K2AHC- PGP key on request, or at home.earthlink.net/~garygarlic
Zone 5/4 in upstate New York, 1420' elevation. NY WO G
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Gary Woods wrote:

that's quick!

i did that last year and it was so much nicer than what i'd been doing before (digging it up, laying it out to dry and then cleaning the dirt off).
when do you take the roots off?
it's gonna be a while yet before ours is ready, scapes are starting to plump up a little.
songbird
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songbird wrote:

I read - maybe here - that it was ready when half of the leaves were browned . I dug up 8 today , they were all between ping-pong and golf ball size . But today was reading to wiat until the tops were all brown . These were planted last October ... I'm going to have to come up with a dish that will show off the garlic ... and I'll be using nothing but fresh for quite a while , I planted over a hundred for the 2 of us .
--
Snag



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On 6/27/2015 9:22 PM, Terry Coombs wrote:

You might want to get a 55 gallon drum of nicely scented mouthwash. Might help. <BSEG>
We just got a heavy thunderstorm with high winds and hail again at around 2130 this evening. Probably will have some garden damage to see at sunrise.
George
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All brown you won't have a decent wrapper, and you will have dirt in the cloves. You want 3-4 green leaves, indicating 3-4 layers of wrapper on the bulbs. I used to wait too long, so I know from experience.
Drying needs to be in full shade, protected from dew. Commercial growers use wagons with a sunshade so the plants are shaded as soon as they are dug up. Got a barn/shed, a covered porch, something like that? I have used various methods over time; the easiest one was laid on some crap bookshelves I diverted from going to the dump, inside an airy barn - just laid the plants out in single layers on the shelves and left them. I have also tied them in bunches of 5 on a long string and hung it, placed them on screens and hauled the screens inside every night and various other things that are more work. If you have adequate space to set them on a shelf and leave them be for a few weeks, it's the lowest work input / handling way to deal with them I've found so far.
Hardnecks (scaping garlic) are virtually impossible to braid, so after a few weeks drying I cut the bulk of the foliage off and store them in a bin. I'm essentially out of growing softnecks at this point, as the ones I was growing petered out and the hardnecks seem to do better for me, here.
While sorting/drying I set aside the nicest heads for seed, and have eventually both read and seen that I need to set aside enough nice large heads that I can use only the nice large cloves for seed, and eat the small cloves from the seed heads when the seed heads are broken up for planting.
--
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Please don't feed the trolls. Killfile and ignore them so they will go away.
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After the drydown/curing stage (unless you're French and like untrimmed roots, of course).

I just snapped off scapes last week and made garlic scape pesto; time for another round to get the ones that were too small or missed. Too wet today, though.
--
Gary Woods AKA K2AHC- PGP key on request, or at home.earthlink.net/~garygarlic
Zone 5/4 in upstate New York, 1420' elevation. NY WO G
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After drying as above for a few weeks, I cut the tops down to about 12", tie in bundles and hang in the kitchen for use. I don't take the roots off. Our soil pretty loose and friable, not sticky, so no wash step is needed.
Do that about the same time I pick out the cloves for the next planting, November here when it's getting cold and wet but not yet freezing.
--
Mike Spencer Nova Scotia, Canada

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On Sat, 27 Jun 2015, Terry Coombs wrote:

How did you know when they were ready for harvesting? This spring, I had some sprouting garlic cloves that I popped into a planter, and now the greens are about a foot long, and getting thick at the base. Do I just occasionally cut some greens off, but wait til fall, or what?
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barbie gee wrote:

Garlic is usually planted in the fall - this was planted last October . When the leaves turned brown halfway up I dug up a couple , they had nice bulbs . Then I read that I should wait until the foilage is all brown , but I think any time after half is brown will work . I'll wait a little longer to harvest it all and hope a hundred plants will be enough for seed and our table .
--
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If you wait until all leaves are dead, you won't have good wrappers on the bulb. Half brown is fine; by then the bulbs are as big as they're going to get.
--
Gary Woods AKA K2AHC- PGP key on request, or at home.earthlink.net/~garygarlic
Zone 5/4 in upstate New York, 1420' elevation. NY WO G
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Gary Woods wrote:

Good to know that , thanks !
--
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barbie gee wrote:

usually i try to get mine out of the ground before all the leaves are brown. we have pretty heavy clay soil which sticks to everything so the longer the garlic is left in the ground the more likely a rain will come along and make it harder to harvest and clean up.

you can eat the green leaves like chives, but that does limit how big the head of garlic will be if you cut off too many leaves. the green garlic (forming bulb, stem, leaves and scapes) are all edible, they don't start getting tough until the leaves start dying back or the scapes open up and start to dry out.
i suspect that growing the garlic in a small planter and cutting the leaves off will end up giving you a pretty small head of garlic with tiny cloves.
i purposely grow green garlic to use like green onions (burying the cloves a few inches deeper than normal) because it grows very easily here as compared to green onions. i use it any time after it starts growing up until the scapes and leaves start drying out.
songbird
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A commercial grower I know takes all the small cloves left over at planting time (you know, the "tweeners" and others too small to make a good bulb next year) and throws them at the end of a bed, to be harvested next spring for green garlic. Good cash source at a time of the year when not much else is feeding the till! He has a goodly Asian community nearby, which helps.
--
Gary Woods AKA K2AHC- PGP key on request, or at home.earthlink.net/~garygarlic
Zone 5/4 in upstate New York, 1420' elevation. NY WO G
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Gary Woods wrote:

that's the first time i've heard of anyone selling green garlic commercially. i love cooking with it or eating it right out of the ground when i'm out weeding it's not too rare for me to pull up some garlic and chomp on it right there.
some year's i've buried five gallon buckets full of scapes or the tiny cloves i've found during processin in deep holes because i can't ever use all of them for planting. the worms take care of 'em. worms also seem to thrive off garlic pieces and left over chaff from peeling and sorting through them. i cut the cloves near the bottom to keep them from resprouting if i'm going to feed them to the worm bins as otherwise they'll keep trying to regrowing for quite some time.
songbird
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On 6/29/2015 2:39 PM, songbird wrote:

You've now got a new source of food, garlic worms. Let us know how they taste. <G>
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George Shirley wrote: ...

like worms!
songbird *peep*
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On 6/29/2015 8:55 AM, songbird wrote:

We grow both garlic and onion chives, mostly around our fruit trees as they are supposed to keep borers away from the tree. So far it has worked. In addition we plant scallions, bunching onions, and regular onions. Generally we plant a few Texas 1015Y sweet onions too. Some of our bunching onions are the children of some a friend gave me over twenty years ago. Pull a bunch, put one or two back in the ground and cut the top off above the start of green. So far so good.
We had another horizontal rain burst last evening, scared the heck out of us as we were sitting on the back porch when it hit. Got another two inches of rain out of it plus some corn stalks blown over.
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George Shirley wrote: ...

garlic chives are a whole different plant than pulling garlic early to eat. we planted some garlic chives some years ago and i've yet to even try them, but i sure do like the plant and the flowers.

those sure can scare the heck out of a person and make them run for the basement! glad you didn't have worse damage.
today, just had a bit of rain come through from the SE (which is very rare) -- looks like more may come through later on when the SE stuff runs into storms coming from the NW. interesting to see on the radar storms moving from the SE to the NW and then also a few miles below storms going from the W to the E.
the forecast only had a 30% chance of rain for us so i watered earlier in the day because the seeds needed to be moistened anyways.
songbird
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On 6/29/2015 3:52 PM, songbird wrote:

I gave up on garlic in the garden years ago, did have some success with elephant garlic and everyone in the family seemed to like the mild variety. The chives do well for us though.
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