It’s #VeggieWednesday! We grow a garlic variety called Music. It is white skinned with a blush of pink and has easy to peel large cloves.
Did you know that it’s a long process from seed to harvest for our garlic? We plant individual cloves in the last week of October and then cover them with compost and straw to wait out the winter. They shoot up after the days start to lengthen, and come mid- to late spring, we are harvesting garlic scapes. Scapes can be chopped from base to tip and used just like garlic in any dish. The scape, a delicious garlicky flower bud, grows back and straightens up indicating that it’s time to harvest.
To harvest the bulbs this year, we used a potato digger on a tractor instead of hand digging with spading forks to save a lot of time and energy. The result of the first harvest is beautiful bulbs of green garlic. Green garlic has fully formed cloves, but since it has not been cured, it must be refrigerated. It will keep for several weeks in the fridge, so there’s no rush to use it. We recommend storing green garlic in a separate sealed bag or container because the scent is so strong.
After more rounds of harvesting, we hang our garlic in the barn to cure. This drying process takes a few weeks but ensures that the garlic will last for many months. So, the next time you see a bulb of garlic, you know that it’s at least been 8 or more months from seed to harvest and to your table. Bet you’ll never look at a bulb of garlic the same again!