Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Of Harvesting Winter Squash and Planting Garlic

 On Tuesday last week we did some harvesting and some planting, along with butchering 40 chickens bringing in a load of goat hay, raking huge piles of leaves and other sundry activities. Yes, it was a busy, busy day.  But this is just about the first part.
 The "Squash patch" out back had done itself proud this year with a healthy crop of Butternut Squash and Pumpkins.  We piled them into the wheel barrow and carted them up to the deck.
 Once there, we set them out beside the other Squash-of-Unknown-Origin (volunteers from the compost pile) to cure for a few weeks.  If the skies threaten a frost, we can easily cover them with blankets.
Praise God for the Bountiful Harvest! 

That task complete, Christianna and I headed over to the garden to plant garlic in a newly prepared bed. After hoeing in layers of composted chicken manure and vegetable compost, I made my shallow trenches. 

Christianna was kept busy breaking open the garlic bulbs (from our harvest earlier in the year) as I pushed each clove into the ground. (point side up:)
 Each planted twice their depth, four inches apart,  93 cloves in all.  (nice even number, I know)
 Then I covered it all up with dirt.  A layer of leaves (mulched with the mower) is added - about 1 1/2 to 2 inches deep.  It is also a good idea to mark the bed with sticks and bright string, so that people will know that you have something planted there.  Before the ground freezes, I cover the entire bed with straw. (as I do with all the garden beds) 
Next spring, about the time the Daffodils are poking up a few inches, remove the straw mulch.  The garlic might be showing by then, and if not, will be very soon.
There's still time! Go plant some garlic!!


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