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Old June 18, 2019   #31
zipcode
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Solid results. That's a lot of garlic. I have noticed that garlic less fertilized (especially with N) will have thinner necks and will mature faster (or rather, the ones fertilized are delayed). The fertilized ones will for certain be bigger in the end, but not proportionally bigger vs neck size. For some varieties, one week can make a huge difference in size, my guess is that the leaves basically unload the stored stuff into the bulb at the end of the plant's life.
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Old June 18, 2019   #32
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What a wonderful operation, you've got it down to the smallest detail.

I love how the bulbs hang upside down for drying, they look so funny with their fluffed up hairdo.
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Old June 18, 2019   #33
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Thanks for the kind words everyone!

JR, here ya go. This was 3 days before harvest on June 11th.
The more I look and think, these close-ups are of the German Extra Hardy. Definitely could have used another few days.
I work full time and took off Friday to harvest. it was also when I could get 10 volunteers all at the same time, so I had to do it regardless. In a perfect world, we would've harvested the Music and Romanian Red, and came back this week to do the GXH.
Maybe next year if it is a drier year, I can split up the harvest dates if need be. I think adding another week to the GXH would be fine and there would have been enough green leaves left for wrappers. There are plenty of large bulbs, but on a percentage basis, there are too many small ones for my liking.

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Last edited by PureHarvest; June 18, 2019 at 07:29 AM.
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Old June 18, 2019   #34
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Bower, the tunnels seem to be about a week or so ahead. However, the one tunnel I had was beat up in a wind storm and I had to remove the cover in late April. Had I been able to keep it on, I wonder if it would have been even earlier. I could have kept them drier and hotter.
Also, I was keeping the sides up during the day in late winter and early spring due to fears of cooking the plants.
I would keep the sides lower or down more often next year to push them further.
I read that the plants stop growing leaves when the temps hit 90. The plants in the tunnel that got messed up were huge early, and I wonder if pushing them earlier with heat would have sped things up even more and still resulted in big bulbs. I harvested the Chesnock in the tunnel they were in on Saturday, and therefore will be one week ahead of the field grown.
My field grown Chesnock look to be really nice. I think most of them will be big bulbs. Gonna harvest them this weekend.
I'd rather dedicate the time and space to more Romanian Red next year and drop the Chesnock. Too many small cloves even in large seed bulbs with Chesnock.
The RR size up the best out of everything I've grown.
No biggie, I'll just sell all the Chesnock and save more of the RR.

Last edited by PureHarvest; June 18, 2019 at 07:31 AM.
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Old June 18, 2019   #35
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Is that a cover crop in with the garlic? clover or what?
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Old June 18, 2019   #36
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Zipcode, I fertilized with a chicken-manure based pelleted fert with potassium sulfate in the fall. Survey says that only half of the N is available from manure in the first year, so I don't think it was too much N come spring. I did one feed with potassium nitrate in April, but the N amount was tiny. Maybe 2 pounds of N per acre, which is very little. Was doing it more to test out my new irrigation and siphon system and to give a potassium boost.
Really think it was just a few days too early.
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Old June 18, 2019   #37
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CL, I tarped the whole plot last summer and started with bare ground at planting. The previous growth was mostly tall fescue. I seeded the walkways with Kodiak Brown Mustard, which filled it nicely. I whacked it all down in April, and then mowed the re-growth 3 times over the next few weeks. Then, in mid to late May, the clover just showed up like I planted it 10x the rate you would. Must have been in the seed bank.
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Old June 18, 2019   #38
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Certainly looks good PureHarvest, hope the remaining plants do well for you
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Old June 18, 2019   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PureHarvest View Post
Bower, the tunnels seem to be about a week or so ahead. However, the one tunnel I had was beat up in a wind storm and I had to remove the cover in late April. Had I been able to keep it on, I wonder if it would have been even earlier. I could have kept them drier and hotter.
Also, I was keeping the sides up during the day in late winter and early spring due to fears of cooking the plants.
I would keep the sides lower or down more often next year to push them further.
I read that the plants stop growing leaves when the temps hit 90. The plants in the tunnel that got messed up were huge early, and I wonder if pushing them earlier with heat would have sped things up even more and still resulted in big bulbs. I harvested the Chesnock in the tunnel they were in on Saturday, and therefore will be one week ahead of the field grown.
My field grown Chesnock look to be really nice. I think most of them will be big bulbs. Gonna harvest them this weekend.
I'd rather dedicate the time and space to more Romanian Red next year and drop the Chesnock. Too many small cloves even in large seed bulbs with Chesnock.
The RR size up the best out of everything I've grown.
No biggie, I'll just sell all the Chesnock and save more of the RR.

There's no doubt in my mind that the garlic in my greenhouse did suffer some heat stress - that may be why they've fallen over, apart from the water issues arising from being in containers in alternating heat and cold, it is hard to know how to keep them just happy. They have some yellowed leaves too, the bottom leaves, but that didn't keep them from growing more.

The last time I had bulbils in the greenhouse - no rounds, so no scapes to indicate readiness - they did fall over early as well but had not sized up so I put them outdoors in spring and harvested same time as the others.

This year is extremely cold, so besides later than normal emergence, it would be fair to say that everything is growing more slowly than usual, although the mature garlic from cloves especially porcelains are looking good. Normally harvest is early to mid August, but in a cold year, we may not harvest until September. No doubt in my mind that being under cover has made a huge difference. The size difference in rounds of the same varieties that are indoors and out is pretty staggering at this point, and makes me doubt if they will even reach the same size at all.


Re: varieties trial. Porcelains rock for bulb size and clove size, not to mention everyone loves them. I'm growing up several Red Russian types and other from the Marbled Purple Stripe group, which at maturity should have 6-8 large cloves instead of the 4-6 typical of Porcelains (vast majority of mine are 4 cloves). That would give us more bang per bulb in terms of planting costs, without compromising bulb size, in theory. So far the Kostyn's Red Russian in year 3 are sizing up like a porcelain with 4 cloves per bulb, time will tell if they have more cloves at maturity, and maybe the perfect compromise between clove number and bulb size?
Rocamboles are also a good option for cost effective planting. We have not had a problem maintaining the size of Spanish Roja at a lower planting cost. 8-9 cloves per bulb, which are mostly large enough to produce a full size, cw Chesnok/Persian Star with 11-12 just not big enough to pump up the bulb size. I am maintaining the SR with 15 bulbs - take the 15 largest cloves from two bulbs for replanting and eat the rest. If needed for seed stock, 15 bulbs will give you at least 120 full sized cloves to plant, and bump it back to 1000 after one year. With 15 each of Ch. and PS, I basically ransacked all the bulbs for their biggest cloves last year, to try and get them to full size. PS harvest at the farm was also dismal last season, very few full size bulbs, and I think she may have given up on replanting them.
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Old June 18, 2019   #40
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Good to know about the Red Russian. Sounds like a good compromise that I may need to trial this fall.
I must note that I almost never get 4 cloves from my porcelains. More like 6.
I forgot to mention that I harvested the 2 Turbans i tried. I planted half pound each of Tzan and Thai Fire. They were small bulbs from the supplier, as it was late summer and that's all they had.
I got a range of sizes.
By the time I clean them up, there might only be 2-3 wrappers.
If i recall, you are supposed to harvest them before tops turn brown at all, unlike the porcelains. I pulled them when some yellowing was happening. Maybe that was too late.
They should be fine, but I wonder if they will keep until November for replant.
They were much earlier than my porcelains, which was why I wanted to try them. Hoping to get something early to start selling in early June instead of July. I harvested them the last week of May. So, 2 weeks earlier than porcelains. Probably could have done a week before that, but I was waiting to see if they could size up. But, the cloves were small to start, so I think I was waiting on something that wasn't gonna happen and could've gotten more wrapper leaves.
I'm gonna replant all the Turbans I harvested. Ill weigh those this week and see what my yield was from 1 total pound.

Last edited by PureHarvest; June 18, 2019 at 11:44 AM.
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Old June 18, 2019   #41
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Thank you for the pics. I was looking for a nearby comparison. I'm about 120 mi north of Seaford, by crow. You say those pics are three days before harvest and you suspect harvest was a week early on that type.

Mine is starting to look a bit yellowed at tips, not crinkled brown like those tops yet. I think it is time, maybe past time, for me to scrape back the wood chips and let them start drying out. I have been weeding so maybe most wood chips are already scraped off. Maybe next week I dig a couple up to check them. They are raised a bit but it has been so wet, plus the main bed is below the outlet for some gutters. Also, they may be a bit too tightly planted, lots of leaves crossing/grabbing each other now. Not perfect like yours, and not much early morning sun due to the fence/trees. I broke the scapes a few days after I noticed them, and most have about a 8-12" blind scape grown out since then. I think I saw a few in your pics as well.

What is the reason for the short trimming, and would it apply to small garden and long term storage?
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Old June 18, 2019   #42
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I can say that we harvested one month after snapping scapes off.
I would also say that your plants should probably have 5 leaves still intact on the top of the plant. The tips can be yellow or yellow starting to stream down, but still a whole leaf. Everything below the fifth leaf down would need to be solid yellow or brown.
Even then, you could be left with 2-3 intact leaves on top and still be ok.
We trim the tops to make harvest easier and to be able to fit the whole harvest in a much smaller area for drying.
I’m sure there are experts that would say that leaving leaves on lets them dry down naturally and slower so the storage is better etc.
It works for us and we sell everything and plant the rest before fall is even over.
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Old June 18, 2019   #43
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I'm new to growing garlic,this garlic is 2.75" across,should I wait longer before I harvest,?only 2 or 3 leaves have turned brown,but it sounds like you experts are saying to wait until about half of them are brown, any advice would be much appreciated, thank you! PS. I peeled the wrappers off to see how it looked inside.
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Old 4 Weeks Ago   #44
JRinPA
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PH, some pics show you have irrigation setup? Did you have to water at all since planting last Fall? Or do you use it for ferts? I certainly did not need to water mine at all.

biscuitridge,
Count the leaves from the top down, 5 mostly green is 5 good solid wrappers for storage. Here are two pages I have bookmarked, one a webpage and one a blog I guess, both posted on tville before:
https://www.gourmetgarlicgardens.com...he-garlic.html
https://www.sustainablemarketfarming...-bulb-harvest/

I was out tonight clearing back wood chips and I pulled dirt back from a border garlic more yellowed than most. Thick stalk but only measured at 1-13/16". I guessed 2 weeks yet at least. That would put it around July 4th, same as last year. I broke off most scapes about June 6th. Four weeks from that would put it around July 4th as well. For me the harvest is is not labor dependent, more like weather dependent. I pulled it out just in time last year, when it was about ready, nice and dry, and right before the next rain.

The one I checked is on the right side of the first pic, the most yellow leaves. That row is pretty close to the wood. It is 5 ft wide and I planted rows of 9 across, staggered row to row.
EDIT: 2nd pic is trying to show depth; the top of the bulb is down about 3-1/2" below top of wood, so 2" above grade. Keeps them above excess water, but I suppose a really cold winter might hurt them near edge of box.
The last pic is counting leaves primer for biscuitridge. That one has a short broken scape, then six fully green and one yellow striped leaf with brown tip.
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Last edited by JRinPA; 4 Weeks Ago at 11:34 PM.
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Old 4 Weeks Ago   #45
zipcode
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PureHarvest View Post
Zipcode, I fertilized with a chicken-manure based pelleted fert with potassium sulfate in the fall. Survey says that only half of the N is available from manure in the first year, so I don't think it was too much N come spring. I did one feed with potassium nitrate in April, but the N amount was tiny. Maybe 2 pounds of N per acre, which is very little. Was doing it more to test out my new irrigation and siphon system and to give a potassium boost.
Really think it was just a few days too early.

Yeah, it seems like it. The necks start slimming down a lot when close to ripening.
Have you ever counted the leaves on your garlic? They say 13 is the maximum and ideal number. From pics I see online, I never saw 13 on hardnecks, more like 11.


biscuitridge, that looks like it still needs time ideally, but opinions are divided in this case. I personally wouldn't pull them unless the weather is bad. I would say rainy weather a good time before harvest is the number one problem for storage, more so than number of green leaves (wrappers let's say).
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