Last year I planted a handful of tiny garlic top sets of an heirloom variety called “Old Homestead” from Sand Hill Preservation Center. I planted them in November (photos here) and they sprouted like fine grass shoots. They disappeared later in the winter and spring, but by the end of summer, they were nice sprouts again.
Today I transplanted the little sprouts to my community plot, as I’m hoping I’ll get bigger heads with full sun. I dug up and transplanted all the little Old Homestead shoots, spacing them out a bit more. (I went ahead and fertilized before I planted.)
I also planted several heads that I’ve been saving – 4 of 5 of my biggest heads from this summer. I ended up filling up nearly a whole bed in my plot. Since I hadn’t included this in my diagram, I’ll have to revise it already – only 2 weeks after I made it.
When I was looking for the fertilizer in the garage this morning, I came across the 4 or 5 garlic heads I’d saved for planting last year. I thought I’d looked everywhere for that! So I planted that today too. About a quarter of it seemed healthy.
I ended up planting about a hundred garlic bulbs, I think. I have visions of lots of home grown garlic next year. The cost per head is so high now (over $1 a head!) at our Farmers Market. I just hope some of mine will be nice big cloves as the teeny little ones are not worth using.
garlic (Allium sativum)