Thursday, December 17, 2015

Deciding when to plant garlic.

As we approach the darkest day of the year, it's very dark in the mornings. Especially when it's a nice constant drizzle. I'm keeping my eye on the horizon for what the weather is going to be as we go forward. I'd like to wait 'till not long before things get really cold to plant the garlic so it doesn't fully sprout before the hard freeze. Assuming we get one at all. If we'd planted when we should have, the garlic would be fully up now and we'd be risking having it die over winter.

Garlic is one of my favorite things to add to food, so growing it just makes sense for us given how much we eat. We actually have a good bucket of garlic for planting. One of the things that's interesting to me is that apparently a lot of conventional wisdom says to plant garlic in the spring. Maybe it's because most of my learning regarding garlic has come from a commercial farmer, and a bunch of seed savers but I've never tried planting anything but late fall. I feel like planting garlic in the spring you'd be dealing with wilting summer temperatures and it wouldn't do as well. I also know that if we want to try for getting seed from the garlic we're going to have to have it in the ground through the freeze. Turns out the little bulbules we have from this last harvest aren't seeds. I had to pluck those out to give the flowers a chance, so we'll try again for that for next year. It isn't like the little bulbules can't be planted, they're just still clones rather than the recombination that I was hoping for. All about learning and trying new things.
Sorry for the really blurry photo here. This morning when the chickens were let out the turkeys weren't out of the trees yet. The Black chicken as I watched ran down the ramp first, ignored the piles of food I'd put out for the poultry, and ran around the coop and the run making noise. When the turkeys did come down if you look just under the coop you'll see a black blur. That's Baba Yaga coming out to see her Turkey friends. Every night they're sad she's gone in and sit on the coop calling for her. Every morning they greet each other and spend the day together. It's a really fascinating thing to me, and is kind of sweet. Now if we could just get the turkeys to come in from the trees to the coop that's for them. We'll see, they're fairly tough.

The other news about the turkeys is, we are starting to wonder if the brown turkey is female. That turkey is smaller, and hasn't shown a lot of male characteristics. We saw the brown one displaying a couple times younger, but apparently some females do that during puberty. The long and short of that, we're going to have to do some research to figure out one way or another.


  1. I love that you named the black chicken Baba Yaga. What better name for a chicken that thinks she's a turkey than a witch who lives in a house on chicken legs?

  2. I always enjoy these updates. The friendship of Baba Yaga and the turkeys doesn't surprise me. It is indeed a sweet thing. You mentioned the turkeys roosting in the trees; my chickens and rooster do that, too. They sleep in one of the pine trees that overlooks the donkey pasture. When the rooster starts crowing in the morning, the donkeys start braying. Noisy here. And wonderful here. Just as it is where y'all are!