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Old May 5, 2018   #1
GoDawgs
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Default Dug the garlic this morning and a few questions

OK, I went ahead and dug the garlic this morning. Perfect weather for it, cloudy and breezy.



They were planted Sep 14. Total take from the bed was 64 Maiskij (the name means May harvest), 18 Scilla and 11 Walmart grocery bulbs. I had bought two WalMart bulbs for planting because they were the biggest, prettiest I had ever seen in their produce aisle. Just couldn’t help myself!

It looks like I got the garlic just in time as 5 of 11 WalMart bulbs and one Maiskij were starting to come apart. It may be that the WalMart bulbs were “older” in that they were the first to start shooting all those skinny leaves.



I came across maybe six or seven double and two triple bulbs. 4” spacing for last year’s and this year’s planting. Didn’t have any last year. Triple left, double right:



Question… is this because they were maybe left in the ground longer that they developed side bulbs? Can or should I separate them now to dry individually or should I let them dry a bit and then split them apart?

I’m drying them on two big window screens I bought at a yard sale last year for this purpose and had to also use my compost sifter. The screens are up on bricks to allow air flow underneath.



The bulbs are laid on the screens in an alternating fashion for air flow. Last year I turned them each day for about three days and then tied them in bundles to hang under the pole shed to cure.



After that they were hung from the clothes bar of an indoor closet that’s not used for much and they stored really well.

One more nice surprise… scapes! I guess I hadn’t been looking too closely. There were no scapes last year but the Scilla had some this morning and just a few of the Maiskij. Maybe because the bulbs were further along this year? Enough to have with lunch today!

If anyone has any suggestions to improve on how I'm handling these bulbs, feel free to make 'em. I'm always open to doing things better. I can read a lot on how to do stuff (and I do) but there's nothing like hearing from those who have "been there, done that".
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Old May 5, 2018   #2
bower
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So interesting to see pics and hear all about your Turban type garlic, GoDawgs!
The way you laid them out to dry is exactly how we do it here too.

Double bulbs: some varieties are prone to this, Spanish Roja is one I know and I got some on New York White as well. It happens when there are two (or three! in a triple) cloves inside the one clove wrapper that you planted.
I just pulled mine apart right there in the field before curing. The roots seem tangled but when you pull they may come apart easily without even tearing at least mine did, (pulling from the two stalk ends not to pry apart the bulb which are delicate). I prefer to separate them right away because the ground is kind of wet here by harvest time so I don't want to leave anything damp trapped in between the bulbs.

If you planted all the garlic at the same time, my guess would be that the Walmart is a super early variety, so next time plan on harvesting them earlier than the others. I wonder if you and Gardeneer had the same garlic from Walmart.

Last edited by bower; May 5, 2018 at 01:27 PM. Reason: explain
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Old May 5, 2018   #3
GoDawgs
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Bower, thanks for your input! I will separate those doubles and triples. Having separated one double (and it was easy to come apart like you said) I stopped, thinking I'd better ask somebody before I do the rest!

Looking back at last year's planting records I see that the Walmart garlic was planted Nov 4th, seven weeks *after* the others and yet it got finished quicker. That's some fast garlic! I might just save the two biggest bulbs for replanting.
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Old May 5, 2018   #4
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Those are nice bulbs. I think you can put three rows next year in that bed, there's plenty of space.
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Old May 6, 2018   #5
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Thank you! I'll see how far the current garlic goes usage-wise and if I need more I'll grow more. That bed is slated for okra down the middle and that will be planted today. That might be a match going forward since I always wait until the ground warms up good before planting okra. Pull the garlic and plant the okra.
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