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Old June 3, 2020   #16
PhilaGardener
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Amazing looking garlic, everyone!
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #17
jhp
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Originally Posted by bjbebs View Post
Great info on plant orientation. Hundreds of thousands of cloves planted and had no idea. A couple pictures of garlic at home. The bases of these stems are nearly as big as my wrists. Honker size garlic plants always make big bulbs. No ferts or irrigation, just rich soils that drain very well.

My market garlic is also larger than usual. Scapes are just starting to show and I'll be out to the farm a couple times a week knocking them down. In 5 weeks this crop will be done.
Nice garlic! Do you mind sharing what you do to make your soil rich?

Thanks!

Jen
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #18
jhp
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My garlic is looking fine so far this year. I have 4 x 50' rows, the rows 12" apart with 6" in-row spacing, and planted (left to right) with Music, Russian Red, Estonian Red, and Killarney Red. This is one row less than last year's bumper crop, which I am still eating fresh but just have too much for my wife and me, plus I have plenty of garlic powder and frozen garlic. Music always produces the largest plants and bulbs for me, and the Estonian Red always has paler leaves. This is my first year for Killarney Red.


Note that the leaf plane is oriented perpendicular to the rows to maximize sunlight and minimize the plant-to-plant shading that would occur if the leaf plane were in line with the rows (i.e. 12" of room to spread vs 6"). Garlic leaves form a fan shape within a single plane, and this plane grows in line (parallel) with the back of the cloves, so orienting the cloves at planting allows you to control the orientation of the leaf plane. Since I mulch heavily with grass clippings and chopped leaves, and leave it on all season, I don't have to weed or cultivate between the rows and therefore the leaves don't interfere.

I fed my garlic about three weeks ago with bloodmeal sprinkled on top of the mulch. I'll do one more application in early May, then stop.
Looks beautiful! I'm intrigued by this tidbit about the orientation of the clove at planting. I hope I remember that come fall! Thanks for sharing.

Jen
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #19
TomNJ
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Nice garlic! Do you mind sharing what you do to make your soil rich?

Thanks!

Jen
The plot I am gardening was previously tended to by my wife's late husband, who incorporated lots of compost and manures. When I started it up again four years ago I had soil samples analyzed and found it to be rather high in essential elements and organics.

I continue to till dehydrated chicken manure (Harmony) in each row before planting, and cover the entire garden with 2-3" of grass clippings that decompose and get tilled in. For nitrogen loving plants like garlic, onions, and corn I also add blood meal.

It's time for another analysis so I plan to pull more soil samples at the end of the season and make additions accordingly. Any pH adjustments I would rather make in the fall tilling to give the limestone time to become effective, and if the essential elements are still very high I may skip the Harmony next year and just use blood meal.
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