bang for the buck

Today was garlic day.

Before growing our own garlic, I had no clue that you plant it in the fall and harvest it the following summer.  Thus, garlic planting in the fall is a marker that a given garden season is nearing the end.

Turns out garlic is also one of the easiest crops to grow–easy to plant, little maintenance (ideally a little weeding now and then, but it actually puts up with a lot of weeds), a little water if it’s a drought year.  But between an hour planting and a few hours weeding in the spring and summer, that’s about it.

Until, of course, you harvest all that garlic.

We planted a lot two years ago–too much for even us to eat.  Yes, some of you got some of the “extra” garlic.  Last year we planted much less because of the overflow the previous year.  And still we finished last year’s garlic only about two weeks ago.

Now it’s time to plant for next season.  Ron’s been splitting wood with a rented hydraulic wood splitter thingy much of yesterday and today so I was on garlic duty.  I decided to count cloves this year.  (Don’t ask me why.)  I planted something like 112(ish) cloves this year.  Except that I had to start and stop several times and somewhat lost track.  At any rate, those 112(ish) cloves will, of course, turn into 112(ish) heads of garlic by next summer.

It’s amazing how $9 in garlic purchased from our co-op (and supplemented by a five heads of our garlic from last year’s harvest) plus a few hours of labor will turn into 112(ish) heads of garlic.  Given that organic garlic runs $2.25 a pop at our farmers’ market, it’s quite a return on both investment and labor.

Not to mention that it’s wonderful, stinky, and yummy.

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