Last Fall, I checked at a couple local nurseries for garlic bulbs to plant with no success. Rather than order through a catalog, I decided to try an experiment and plant garlic I bought at the Doherty farmer's market. I figured that whatever variety I could find there should be perfect for Colorado conditions.
Drying in the sun.
I even figured out how to braid it! I found instructions here.
A few things I've learned for next year's garlic crop:
- Plant 2-3 times as much.
- Choose only the largest cloves from each head of garlic to plant. I had read that the larger the clove, the larger the plant will be, and that proved true. I just planted every single clove from the one head I had left, and the smaller ones took the same amount of garden space while producing much less.
- Line the garlic plants around the perimeter of the garden. I've read that it keeps bugs away, which has been a problem for me this year on the plants furthest from the garlic area.
This should last me...maybe through Christmas? We love garlic :)
And ya, those really are my light switch plates.
Total Investment: $.50 (for the one head of garlic at the farmer's market) plus the cost of water for a 2' square plot (negligible)
Total Payout: $9.00 (the equivalent of 18 heads of garlic -- I'm counting some of the smaller ones as 1/4 or 1/2 a head)
I'll definitely plant more this October!