Garlic planting day!

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My garlic bulbs from Southern Exposure Seed Exchange arrived today!

Inchelium Red, a softneck, and the rocambole-type, Georgia Fire.


This is our first year growing garlic in our deci-acre garden. I have always been hesitant to grow garlic, primarily because the flavors of a given variety can vary widely with differing soil conditions. What if I planted them and they were duds?

Then again, what if my little lot has a special terroir that makes great garlic!

We had recently dug up our sweet potatoes, and the bed was already growing over with a fine layer of chickweed. Speaking of that, did you know that you can eat chickweed? It is one of my favorite edible weeds. (Good thing, because I have it in abundance!)

If you can’t beat it, eat it! Chickweed, purslane, dandelion, and cress make a wonderful salad!


I planted the garlic bulbs a little over 2 inches deep, 6 inches apart.

Georgia Fire and Inchelium Red, respectively.


Garlic ready to be tucked into bed.

The final job was to fence off the area from the ducks. They love to root around in freshly disturbed soil. As I worked, they stood above me on the next bed, softly quacking at me to get out of their way so they could have a turn.

I use lightweight bird netting as a temporary fence for the ducks. It is not incredible strong, but it is cheap ($8 for a 100 x 7 ft section, which I halve to two 100 x 3.5 ft sections to make it go even farther). It is also extremely light-weight, and I can move it quickly and easily around the garden as I need to shift the ducks from one area to another. I attach bright pieces of yarn every so many feet to remind the ducks (and me) that it is there, as it can be hard to see sometimes.

Temporary fencing around the garlic bed. Keep out ducks.


With luck, I will see some garlic scapes pushing through the soil soon. I’ll be mulching them later to give them an extra boost of protection through the winter.

But if not, I saved several cloves of each to try again in the spring.

One more new crop on our path to sustainability.





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