Glorious garlic

If I had only a small patch of soil to grow things in, I’d grow garlic!

Measured by weight, good quality garlic (as distinct from the tasteless white imported garlic) costs more than the best fillet steak, clocking in at over $30/kg at certain times of the year.


Yet once a gardener can manage to surreptitiously lift a few bulbs of garlic from the cook’s precious horde, one can double or triple that weight each year while still retaining enough of the very largest and best-formed bulbs to grow on in the following winter and spring.

Garlic grows easily on the Adelaide Plains, often without the benefit of much irrigation, as it does most of its growing through the winter and spring rainfall periods.

Garlic is typically planted on the shortest day of the year (21st June) and harvested when the foliage has died back on the longest day of the year (21st December). It stores well for about six months if hung in a dry cool and dark place.

Six months ago, I started with a dish of 16 bulbs (link here, scroll down), splitting them into about ten cloves each, where each clove develops into a whole new bulb. I estimate that I’ve harvested about 200 bulbs from that initial batch, though my stock has already been depleted; a small bag of garlic makes a wonderful Christmas gift from gardeners to cooks.


Hazel said...

I am in love with garlic. I have never grown it before and just pulled up my first harvest. It is a wonderful and super easy thing to grow. I even blogged about it today.

Tracey said...

I just discovered my own wild garlic growing the other day - a nice surprise! i wonder if you can tell me - I kept the tiny yellowish garlic bulbs attached to the side of bigger fully grown ones, in order to keep them dry and plant in April. Was the the right thing to do? I am VERY new to this gardening thing and would love your help.
Thank you :)

Veggie Gnome said...

Tracey, go for it! Plant those little ones. Also, if possible, set aside some really nice, fat garlic cloves. They will give you very big heads of garlic. :)

Amber said...

Brilliant. Thanks for the inspiration. I grow alot of things in my garden, but not garlic. This winter for sure.
PS Great blog!

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