In the early summer, one of my favorite farm tasks is harvesting the garlic! I am ready to reap the benefits of bulb planting back in October! Garlic is planted as individual bulbs and left over the winter under a thick layer of straw mulch. In spring, the green sprouts shoot out of the mulch and are some of the first green we see after the long winter!
Garlic scapes, or the garlic plant flower, emerge in late spring and are one of my favorite culinary treats. These unusual snake-like scapes can be chopped up and used like scallions or in any place you would use garlic! They are also great for pickling. The flowers must be taken off the plant so the plant can focus the last of its energy on making the garlic bulb large and delicious!
Around the 4th of July (although early this year!), the green top begins to brown and die-back and it is time to pull up the bulbs. Garlic then needs to be 'cured' or dried and is hung in bunches from the rafters of the barn (in this case, the kids shed). After about a month, the tops can be cut off or braided and the garlic is ready to eat! Garlic usually stores well for 8 months- 1 year.
Look for Arcadia garlic on the Mobile Market soon!
Posted by Farmer Mo at 7:37 AM