Garlic Braid

I cleaned and braided my softneck garlic this afternoon. With only 13 heads, this is the smallest braid ever. But those heads are big. But then, I still have four heads from last year’s harvest. The braid will hang in my pantry for storage. I will consume my hardnecks first, plus four or five smaller (and “injured”) softnecks that did not make it into the braid. I also saved the two largest heads separately as seed garlic to go in the ground in late October/early November. The hardneck garlic is still just hanging in the back hallway. I want to give it a bit more time for curing before I clean it and put it away as it has been very hot and humid these past few weeks.

July Update

Spaghetti squash, Black-Eyed Susan, Thai basil – from the communal flower bed

Over the past couple of weeks, I have been harvesting a lot of zucchini, kale, herbs and flowers. I even donated two zucchini to our new donation basket, which we attached outside the garden gate. Today, I harvested the first two cucumbers, which I intend to pickle. My tomatoes are all still green, and sadly, the bunnies keep eating the baby winter squash :(. The basil is thriving, I might make the first batches of pesto very soon. Everything is doing well, we have had a long heat wave and a few crazy thunderstorms, so the gardens are lush.

Cherry tomatoes from the communal flower bed.

Garlic Harvest 2024

This morning, I harvested my garlic. It was a good week or two earlier than in previous years, but it seemed ready. An empty-nester now, I grew less than in previous years and harvested 19 softnecks and 12 hardnecks. I will leave them on a tarp to dry for a few days (on my back porch out of the sun) and then brush off the soil and hang them in my back hallway to fully cure. After they have fully cured (in three to four weeks), I will clean them well and braid the softnecks and destem the hardnecks. I will use up the latter first as they do not keep as well as softnecks.

Update: The next day, in the late evening, I cleaned them lightly and hung them to dry. There are four bundles, the two shown below are the hardnecks.

Hardneck garlic left to cure

First Zucchini

I harvested my first zucchini (zucchino?) yesterday and turned it into a roasted vegetable goat cheese pizza. I roasted broccolini, red bell pepper, red onion, Brussels sprouts and zucchini, and spread those on a garlic bechamel. Topped it all with goat cheese and fresh mozzarella. (Recipe from the cookbook Eat Delicious). The pictures do not do it justice. It was delicious!

Garden Plot Clean-Up

Garden plot after weeding and mulching

This morning, I spent a couple of hours weeding my plot and spreading salt marsh hay that I had left over from weeding the outside garden bed and fertilizing and mulching it earlier this morning. The outside bed is now pretty much all set until the fall, when I am hoping to get spring bulbs in the ground. I mulched that bed heavily, hoping to suppress the weeds. Fingers crossed.

Outside bed after weeding and mulching

My plot is now ready for summer. The zucchini are coming in, the first tomatoes are showing up on the vine, the leeks have recovered, the winter squash is spreading, and the garlic is almost ready for harvest.

First zucchino of the year
I am loving my calendula border. So many different flowers.