Jun 21, 2008

winter solstice gardening

As per tradition, we planted our garlic today - to be harvested on the longest day. Last time we grew garlic, a few years ago, we didn't use it much so we haven't planted any since. We found those jars of pre-crushed goodness to be so much more convenient.

However, since discovering that you can roast the whole bulbs and eat them spread on bread, and the power of garlic's antibiotic properties, I think we could find a use or two for the mighty bulb. And growing it is way cheaper than buying those little jars! (an increasing consideration in these times of ever-higher fuel and food prices).

So Merl bought 1 bulb of garlic today while veggie shopping. After ensuring it hadn't been irradiated (which apparently included a conversation with the check-out operator explaining what 'irradiation' is), we brought it home, stripped it into individual cloves and planted the cloves out in a wee corner of the garden. So hopefully all will be well!

Why only one bulb? Well, there's no use getting carried away, is there? If we use it, we can plant more next year (I believe its our scots ancestry emerging).

Additional gardening adventures today: planting out some purple sprouting broccoli seeds into little 'pete pots'. These are not actually made of peat, but of wood fibre and peat-moss, and are great, because you can grow your seedlings then transplant the whole pot into the ground without disturbing your seedling. It's a little late to plant these, so I've tucked the wee pots into a cold-frame and we'll see how we go. Also, we bought some seed potatoes and I laid them out in the garage to begin sprouting.

So I feel virtuously prepared for the coming spring. Hardly an uber-gardener, but certainly more than we got done last year!

P.S. Photos of the 'garden,' as promised! Most of what you see in the top and middle photos is hedge-trimmings mulch - dormant beds waiting for spring (and the forlorn remains of our scarecrow). The bottom photo is a largely neglected garden along the side of the house which has quite pretty flowers come spring, and the very beginnings of food production - if you squint you can see the cold-frame/cloche at the far end of it. The garlic I planted today is just around the corner beyond the cold-frame.


Anonymous said...

good luck with the garlic. I bought a bulb from the local market, figuring it's only imported stuff that gets the irridation treatment, and that's kept me in plants for a couple of years


home handymum said...

That's what I figured too. Apparently the check-out operator actually couldn't tell Merl whether it had been irradiated or not. We suspect it is probably imported, so now I'm wondering whether to go get another bulb at the local farmer's market to be on the safe side. (oh the extravagance! two bulbs!)

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