I seem to have reached a height of disorganisation of late. I’m doing quite a bit of volunteering at my daughter’s school which is eating into my gardening time. I don’t resent it as I’m enjoying it and it is for the school after all, but it does have its repercussions. One of them is that I haven’t planned my winter garden properly and I have just bunged brassicas in where there is space. Additionally the chooks are proving more trying in their free ranging than I had (very naively) imagined. I also keep running out of time to do basic garden maintenance so there are areas in the beds that haven’t been fed or mulched properly etc etc etc. The result of all this is that I don’t seem to have any space much to grow my garlic. However I did managed to plant out a section last week. YAY!
I selected the biggest heads from last years crop of soft neck varieties. Last year I planted both hard neck and soft neck varieties but the soft neck seem to prefer Melbourne’s climate so I am just concentrating on them this time. I posted on last years experiences and you can find it here.
I separated the heads into large cloves to plant for storing garlic, and little cloves that I will plant for green garlic.
The small cloves I planted really close together in small sections of the garden, however (and this gives you an indication of my current levels of ineptitude) I forgot to mark where and now have no idea where I put them. Note to self: Get your act together! Hopefully they will reveal themselves soon though.
The larger cloves I planted out in a grid leaving 15cm both between cloves and between rows. This is the same spacing I used last year and seemed OK. I then covered the area with a very light mulch (as much to mark the area I planted in as anything else) and put some chicken wire over the top to try and stop; the chooks, blackbirds and doves scratching all the cloves up. It has only been kind of successful…
This year I am planning on feeding my garlic more than I have in the past, mostly because Dave from Our Happy Acres recommended it in this post, (check the comments). He grows pretty fab garlic and given my heads are generally on the small side everything that might help them be bigger should be tried in my opinion.
I only planted out 30 cloves (plus the small ones) so I wont get a years supply from this area , but perhaps I will be able to clear another couple of areas this weekend. I usually aim for about 100 plants to give me a years supply so I have a little bit of work to do if I am going to achieve that this year.
Are you planting or about to harvest garlic? Do you feed your garlic? If so what and when?