Friday, October 21, 2011

Garlic and Onions Learning Curve

Today is overcast and chilly,the kind of Fall day when one looks at the gray clouds and thinks,"Hmm...looks like rain or snow flurries." You know it's not quite cold enough for snow,but man..those clouds make you think it.

Today was garlic planting day. This is our first attempt at garlic. We have been given bulbs in the past to plant. We have never actually done it,but we have enjoyed them in our meals! This year,our neighbor gave us quite a few bulbs and cloves,and I was determined that I was going to plant at least some of them. I decided to plant about 10 cloves in a couple of places. I have an eco box that I planted 5 in after I moved it a nice sunny spot.

One does not plant the whole bulb,but plants the separate cloves that form the bulb.The pointy side of the clove must be facing up,though this photo doesn't show it..

Since we live in zone 5A,we have to plant the cloves at least 3"-5" into the soil,and if you are making rows,they need to be about 18" apart.I only planted a single row.I then planted 5 more in the box I had the beets and peas in. I need to water them for the next three days,and will have to cover them with mulch before too long.We haven't had a frost yet here,which is amazing!We usually have had one by now,though other parts of the state have seen one.

The next thing I did was clean out my onion bed.I left my onions right where they were,in the soil,even after their stalks had dried up and turned brown. Some of the onions didn't reach this stage,so I think my thought process was just to leave everything be until they all were ready. That was my bad,because some of the onions started to regrow green stalks! I wound up having some that were not good-if I could smush the onion in between my fingers,forget it. My red onions turned out to be much hardier than the white ones. I placed them on our drying screen/compost sifter,and put this in our mudroom.Now it smells like "Eau de Onion" out there!

One thing I did learn was that I need to space my onions more,or build a bigger box for them. Most of the onions came out rather small,but they are still good!

Tonight we are having spaghetti and homemade sauce,which hopefully will come out fabulous with homegrown ingredients (tomatoes,herbs).I am going to make enough so I can freeze some for future spaghetti nights. Last night we enjoyed homemade crock pot chili,gluten free cornbread,and homemade chocolate fudge for dessert. Rick took one bite of the chili,and said,"You have done me proud yet again,Woman." :)

Our AC's have finally been taken out of the windows....our list is getting smaller and smaller....finally!

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