Garlic, Garlic and more Garlic
Garlic is a wonderful long process, with a delicious end. The garlic bulbs go into the ground in the fall, ideally in October – carefully placed in rows. They then spend the winter, spring, and part of the summer in the garden. They need to be weeded a few times, whether with the tractor, hoes or by hand. Then they need their scapes cut off, which you have had the joy of tasting. This keeps the plant’s energy focused on developing the bulb rather than flowering. A bit more weeding and then the special day to harvest them arrives. That happened last Wednesday! First you go down the row with a spade, loosening the bulbs in the ground. Then a quick walk back down the row to pile the garlic together. Repeat for a total of 12 rows, then hook the trailer onto the tractor and drive through the bed, loading up the garlic piles! We filled the trailer with all the lovely bulbs, then spent a good while trimming off all the root hairs. The next step is to hang it all up to dry on the wooden beams around the shop. So look up, and it should appear one day soon!
Another busy week with lots happening… We had an inspector from Demeter Canada come to the farm last week as well. He was able to provide some feedback on the biodynamics and farm in general, and we were proud to hear he was generally impressed by Riverglen! The porch of the house has been converted into seedling space again, where hopefully the flea beetles won’t find the poor little seedlings. A millimeter hole on a leaf five millimeters wide is much harder for the plant than on a full size leaf. Some of you were lucky to get chickens last week too – that involved a couple of very early mornings for David driving the chickens around. Sometimes his energy store seems endless! The newest crop is cucumbers, which Steve is busy harvesting every day – there will be some for you all this week. A decent bit of tidying got done around about as well… and with so much happening, there’s lots more work for us this week.
What’s in my Box?
- Mesclun: Your staple green for quick side dishes and sandwich fillers.
- Scallions: Scallions are the flavour of the week for your eggs, stir fries, or sautés.
- Carrots: This week they are colourful!
- Beets: These can be the star ingredient of cake, the recipes from the pot luck are below.
- Zucchini: My favourite is sautéed, with a bit of salt, pepper and Parmesan sprinkled on when they are cooked, and then broiled till the cheese is golden. A bit of white balsamic on them also makes for a nice side-dish.
- Beans: Some are purple, some are green, they go nicely mixed into some rice or couscous.
- Cucumbers: Every day Steve or David head out to pick these, and always come back with a full crate! Munch them whole, cut them up into a salad, slice them into sandwiches…
- Broccoli (for Thursday): Don’t forget the stems are nice too – when chopped up to matchstick size they make a nice salad with olive oil, Parmesan, salt and pepper. I’ve always known them as ”fiammifero”, which is Italian for match-sticks.