Sunday, August 16, 2009

Garden 2009: Garlic Planting

In the garden over the past several days:

GARLIC:  Jo planted garlic. Her technique is to use a spacing board and lay out all the cloves. Then, she uses the trowel to plant each clove. There's only one problem with this technique: Canine garden buddies. When Jo's back was turned, the dogs kept stealing garlic cloves. The didn't eat the garlic, just carried it off and played with it.

Here in the south, garlic is planted in late summer. It sprouts and the plants grow to a modest size before winter when they go dormant. As soon as the weather warms up in the spring, the garlic begins growing again. It's dug in mid-summer.

GREEN BEANS: Jo picked more and got them into the freezer.

YELLOW SQUASH AND ZUCCHINI: Mother Hubbard's cupboard was bare; ours is full of yellow squash and zucchini. Jo has tried freezing them in the past, but when thawed they are fall-apart mushy. She read somewhere online that they remain more firm if sliced and steam blanch instead of blanching in boiling water. She experimented with freezing a couple of pints using that method. We'll see.

CUCUMBERS: Production is far surpassing what I can eat. (Jo doesn't care for cucumbers.) Jo's intending to make some quickie pickles. We have quarts of regular canned pickles still left over from years past.

BED MULCHING: I've got three of the four fallow beds heavily mulched with grass clipping. I spread a layer of compost followed by a layer of manure. Then, I cover the beds with a layer of newspaper with the grass clipping on top. Our plan is that all we'll need to do next spring is pull back the mulch and plant. The possible flaw in this plan is: Armadillos. Armadillos love the bugs and earthworms that thrive under the mulch. If an armadillo discovers the beds and goes on a overnight feeding frenzy, the beds will look as if they've been tilled. Later in the fall, I can cover the beds with chicken wire we have for that purpose, but for now the beds have to stay uncovered so I can keep the weeds and especially Bermuda grass from growing into the beds from the aisles.

Creative Commons License



Anonymous said...

fascinating stuff. I love reading your gardening updates and photos :)

gwendolen said...

Try a cucumber eye mask Marvin :-)

Deb said...

Ooooh! What a lovely garden and winter plan.

Do you have any armadillo photos around here? Last one I saw was crossing a county road in Texas, the one I drove to get to an airport.

TSannie said...

My parents are filling bags with cucumbers and zucchini. Dad takes them to exercise, to volunteer work, to the occasional Dr. appt., everywhere! Most time they're taken, but more than once, they've been turned down! Mom and dad say they're going to start leaving them on random door steps.

My problem? 2 zucchini and 3 cucumbers. A plethora of various peppers, tho and some of the best beans ever! So no putting up for me, but enjoying what I do have.

Q said...

I shred the zukes and freeze them. Come winter I have shredded zucchini for muffins. My husband eats two muffins every morning for breakfast. I don't think I will have enough zukes to get me by. The squash bugs got my plants early this year. It has been so wet and cool I am grateful I even have had a few zukes for the stir fry. I may have to come up with another muffin for him...apples look good this year. It might be apple muffins for 2010!
It has been good catching up with you.