Friday, June 12, 2015

Curing Garlic

The garlic finally matured and was ready to pull up out of the ground. I planted the bulbs in the raised beds so long ago I can't remember the exact date. I'm thinking it was October sometime. I know, I need to keep better records. Typically garlic is planted in this area several weeks before the first expected frost, and then harvested about nine months later (!) when the green shoots start to yellow and wither, sometime around June. I didn't realize it would take nine months to mature so I wasn't very careful about where I planted them. I'll plan better next time so it doesn't interfere with spring planting.

I had to research a little about what to do with garlic once it is picked. When it comes out of the ground the bulbs are quite soft so they need to be dried, or cured, for a couple of weeks before they can be stored or they will get moldy.

I tied 5-6 stalks together with some garden twine. They smell quite strong so I didn't want them hanging in the house to dry. I decided to hang them inside the chicken coop since it is shaded but also good ventilation for drying. I was also hoping the garlic smell would repel some of the mosquitoes living out there.

After they dry I am going to try braiding the stalks for storage.

I had about 50 garlic stalks of various sizes.

The one of the right has lost the outer layer so won't hold together well.

I used garden twine and tied loops at each end.

I took 5-6 stalks and tied them together by putting one loop end through the other loop.

I had about 10 bunches.

I used the other loop to hang on nails in the chicken coop.

I'll let the bunches hang for about two weeks.


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