August 3, 2017

Harvesting Garlic at the Farm

Time to harvest my garlic...

Determining when garlic is ready to harvest can be tricky. If it’s harvested too soon, the cloves are small and underdeveloped. If harvested too late, the clove heads begin to separate, making them more vulnerable to decay. The real indicator is the plant itself - when the bottom leaves have turned brown, and the top leaves are still green. 

This week, my head gardener, Ryan McCallister, harvested this year’s crop. Garlic is divided into two categories - the supermarket variety, softneck, which produces long-lasting bulbs with many cloves around a soft center stem, and hardneck, which are noted for their stiff central stalk, fewer cloves, relatively short shelf life, and intriguingly complex flavors. All our varieties came from Keene Garlic, a family owned farm in Wisconsin. They include: Chamisol Wild-Rocambole,Armenian Porcelain, Music Porcelain, Northern White-Porcelain, Metechi-Purple Stripe, Italian Red Porcelain, Montana Giant-Porcelain, Russian Giant Marble-Purple Stripe, Pehoski Purple-Marbled Purple Stripe, Persian Star Purple Stripe, Elephant Garlic, German Extra Hardy Porcelain, Russian Giant Marble-Purple Stripe, Majestic-Porcelain, Georgian Crystal Porcelain, and Chesnok Red-Purple Stripe. Enjoy these photos.