Our garlic harvest

23 August 2018
My version of simple life has never been a big picture scenario, it's always been a series of small steps that change with the seasons. I don't think the majority of us think of the big picture on a day-to-day basis, instead we have tasks to carry out, we put one foot in front of the other and by doing that all our activities start creating a simple life and a sustainable future.

One of our recent activities was harvesting the garlic. The variety we grow here is called Glen Large, it's suitable for warmer areas. We plant in early March, harvest in August-September and then try to keep that garlic going for the whole year. We don't eat garlic every day but when I do cook with it, I want it to be from my own backyard. Onions are more prevalent in my cooking. We eat onions every day - cooked or raw. Sadly, we can't grow onions here but I do have Welsh onions growing, although they're more like chives, and next March I'll be planting out some walking onions which are more like shallots. So even though garlic isn't eaten here every day, it's an important crop for us.

The bulbs were small this year but still delicious. We've not had our usual rainfall for a few years now so some plants suffered as a result. 

Two weeks ago we pulled up 97 garlic heads. I spent an hour or so wiping soil and old leaves off,  clipping off long roots, cleaning them as much as possible without disturbing the garlic too much, then I strung them up and now they're hanging in the shade of the back verandah, drying out.  In the next week or two I'll take them down, clean the properly, cut the roots right back, cut the stem and leaves right off and store them for later use.  I'll use half for cooking and half for planting our next crop in March.

Is garlic one of your crops too?