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Friday Favorite: Garlic Harvest

September 4th, 2015

There’s something about harvesting things that are buried underground. It’s like a treasure hunt. You never know quite what to expect when you plunge the spade into the ground.
garlic mulch
This year was especially exciting because I followed a friend’s advice. Susan from Moonlight Mile Herb farm mulches her garlic with litter from her chickens coops in the spring. She spreads it right on, straight from the coop. It’s always claimed that this should NEVER be done, because chicken manure it way too hot to put directly on crops. Let me me tell you, it’s the perfect mulch for garlic!
harvesting garlic 2
The chicken litter mulch provided some of the best moisture retention I’ve ever had with mulch. The fertilization was perfect as well. My garlic is AMAZING this year!
harvesting garlic 1
Another benefit is that the chicken litter kept the weeds from germinating as well, perhaps it heated up the soil enough for them to germinate under the mulch? You can bet I’ll continue using this method for years to come. I’ll also be experimenting with using fresh chicken litter on other crops (nothing that gets eaten raw within 3 months of application though).

What’s your favorite crop to harvest?

5 Comments to “Friday Favorite: Garlic Harvest”
  1. Gretchen on September 4, 2015 at 6:33 am

    Wowza! I just ordered some to plant for the first time. Maybe I’ll try that too! I really hope I get a good yield

    Reply to Gretchen's comment

  2. Joan on September 4, 2015 at 10:08 am

    I’m with you – root crops are some of my favorites. garlic, onions, sweet potatoes, potatoes… I also like to harvest early spring crops like asparagus and the greens from overwintered bunching onions.

    Reply to Joan's comment

  3. Sara on September 4, 2015 at 11:21 am

    Ooh, great tip! I’m thinking of throwing some on when I first mulch the bed in the fall, and maybe toss a mid-winter coop cleaning on there too, while it’s still frozen. Thanks!

    Reply to Sara's comment

  4. Kristen on September 4, 2015 at 12:37 pm

    I think the reason I love growing potatoes is the treasure hunt aspect of digging them up. So fun! Thanks for the compost tip as well. I also love to grow tomatoes; walking through the garden eating cherry tomatoes also feels a little like a treasure hunt as well.

    Reply to Kristen's comment

  5. Nebraska Dave on September 5, 2015 at 9:21 am

    Susy, my favorite crop to harvest would sweet corn …. if I could ever get to do that. Next year will be the first year that I have a chance to defeat the pesky raccoon. One of my blogger friends named my plan to secure the corn next year “the building of a fortress”. There’s three barriers to get through before the raccoon can get to the corn. One is the six foot wooden fence that is nearing completion after three years; another is the four foot chicken wire fence around the corn patch inside the wooden fence; and the last is the three electric wires around the chicken wire fence spaced at six inches, eighteen inches and three feet. If they get through all that, then I guess they deserve to have some. So, here’s to the corn harvest of 2016. :-)

    Have a great garlic harvest day.

    Reply to Nebraska Dave's comment

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This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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