We are harvesting the remainder of our Early Purple Stripes. It will be 3-4 more weeks before the big porcelains come on stream.
We are at the Abbotsford and White Rock Farmer’s Markets. We are in White Rock every week starting SUNDAY May 29th.
Meet us at the Abbotsford Market starting SATURDAY June 4th.
Prices: Marbles (Bulbs under 2 inches) $1.00 each or 6 for $5.00
Regulars (Bulbs 2″ to 2.75″) $2.00 per or 3 for $5.00
Bigs (Bulbs over 2.75″) $2.50 per or 5 for $10
Scapes & Garlic Greens: $2.00 per bunch (in season)
We will be selling pickle and seed garlic (in bulbs or pre-popped) later in the season. Prices to follow.
Here is John in his 2016 Garlic Camo. These are among the first early Purple Stripes. Most are in the 2-3 inch diameter range. Some will be cured enough by May 29 for immediate consumption but others may need an extra week, but they are easy to hang and cut as needed.
Here is a typical Purple Stripe bulb as of April 27th. Most have very thick stems (around an inch in diameter) with the plants stretched out to 35 inches tall. We are about 4-5 weeks from harvest.
Since the beds are covered in paper and compost the weeds aren’t much of an issue among the garlic plants. The paths between the rows are another matter. Here is John weed-whacking the paths. This not only limits the weeds creeping into the beds it also makes life difficult for beetles and other insects that need weed cover to flourish. The Guinea Fowl patrol these mowed paths and gobble up unsuspecting bugs that produce crop damaging larva (wireworm for instance).
Right now we are spending several hours a days trimming the 40 odd paths, most about 300 feet long.
Hard to believe, but the Purple Stripes starting showing Scapes on April 25th! They are growing rapidly and we will tag many of the earliest and save their bulbils for next fall’s planting. We are slowing developing a very early hardneck variety with a late May harvest.
We have just started planting red onion sets (a little late this year). We had so many requests for red onions we switched from last year’s Spanish. We generally only grow a few thousand onions as it isn’t our main crop but since it is another allium we like them as a companion to our main garlic crop.
Here’s a nice shot of our main garlic field as of April 9th, 2016. Keep checking back as we count down to the early purple harvest. Barely 6 weeks to go!!
This year we will be selling local farmer’s markets and we will be selling bulk bags/boxes of garlic this year as well as loose bulbs. We will have prices and points of sale posted by the end of May.
Here is our 5,500 plants in the north field. The paler green rows in the foreground are the early purples. The water logged soil has drained away and the raised beds did their job. Most plants are 24″ ground to tip with some nearing 30″. In the background are the darker porcelains, red rojas, music and Salt Spring Island variety.
Here’s a shot of our 25,000 plant main field. Those tall plants in the foreground are some white mustards growing along the paths. We are harvesting the leaves. A south asian chef is making Saag (a fabulous dish with garlic, onions and spices). She generously shares her divine cooking with us. White mustard is extraordinarily high in minerals.
The garlic beds in the foreground are porcelains, with the purples off in the distance. The porcelians are growing rapidly and will soon catch up and pass the purples. As of today, (April 7th, 2016) our porcelains are 15-18 inches tall, with the purples mainly 22-30 inches high. The stems on both plants are thickening nicely. Al,l the beds are now covered in paper strips with a compost mulch. This will be the last weeding we will do on the beds themselves. It is also the last feeding. We still anticipate the purple harvest to start in the last week in May, with the other varieties coming out of the ground 4-6 weeks later.