Garden, Plant, Cook!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Garlic Up! Onions Too!

Dear Folks,

The garlic I planted October 1st for harvesting next spring is already up - yippee!  I will give it another couple of weeks and count how many heads I can anticipate.  I planted over a 100 cloves of the "Purple Glazer" variety.

These "new" garlic are planted specifically to harvest as head garlic next spring.

I also planted some of my 'older' garlic to harvest over the next couple of weeks/months for green garlic.  Those I planted on October 3rd (along with a native onion I'itoli I got from Vilardi Gardens).

On October 6th I planted red onion sets, very close together so I can harvest over the coming months for scallions - pulling every 3rd or 2nd one - and winding up with storage onions next late spring/early summer.  "Storing" your green garlic and scallions in the ground until you need them is a REALLY good thing!  The second picture shows the onions on the left and the green garlic and I'itoli onion on the right.  (I left my 'measuring' pipe in place over the onions to discourage the birds.  They don't like onions or garlic but will dig up new plantings sometimes to see what I put in :-)  You will also see some volunteer nasturtiums in that picture.  I'm leaving some in and pulling some that may interfer with the intended plantings.

I began to have a problem with the flea beetles attacking my radish/cabbage seedlings, but the garlic coming up has appeared to discourage them.

This bed is the one I recently reclaimed from garlic chive over-growth and so I will also be weeding out baby garlic chives for a looonnnnggg time, but I have plenty growing elsewhere.

Garlic is really one of the easiest (and tastiest) foods to grow.  If you grow for head garlic, plant in sunny location before November 1st, in well draining soil,  water properly, keep weeded and just watch it grow.  Very few pests trouble garlic (except for the occasional bird wondering what you planted there).  If growing green garlic, the same principles apply.  When you pull a green 'scallion' garlic, just replace with another clove and continue harvest/re-plant through May.


Be sure to check the calendar at the bottom of the blog for information on scheduled lectures.  October 19th, 25th, 26th, and November 2nd.  These might be the only ones until after the holidays, so if you need some help with the how-2s on successful gardening or friends / family have been saying they want to garden, check out the details.  Each venue has its own registration contact info.

Have a great day in the garden!

-- Catherine, The Herb Lady

Monday, October 17, 2011

Quick Pickle - More.

Dear Folks,

I posted a recipe for making quick pickles (refrigerator - not shelf-stable) last week.  Over the weekend, I pickled some nice green beans and some leek I had left-over.

I picked up the beans Friday from One Windmill Farm at the Mesa Farmers Market.  (This market has been going on for about 15 years, year-round every Friday.  Great vendors!!!

Last week's post on quick pickles

After I prepared the green beans, I had some left over brine so I tossed in some radishes I had picked that morning, and some sliced up celery.  Let them cool and had them later for a little snack.

That is the beauty of this kind of pickling/brining.  You can enjoy them that day or over the next couple of weeks.  Consider whatever veggie you might have on hand.  You can pickle fruits too and add some sugar to the boiling liquid along with spices.

Have fun experimenting with your garden harvest.  And don't forget to check out your local farmers market for fall goodies.  All the root crops are starting to come in and all can make a nice batch of quick pickles.

And you do not have to make gallons or quarts at a time!

-- Catherine, The Herb Lady