Sunday, October 20th the weather was the perfect for just about any type of outdoor activity (except snowmobiling, snow shoeing, ice fishing or anything else the requires temperatures to be freezing or below). We reached a high temp of 70 degrees Fahrenheit (21 Celsius), the sky was mostly clear and there was little if any wind.
We were surrounded by beautiful fall colors.
The chickens were happily doing what chickens do.
Our activity of choice was planting garlic, or playing in the dirt as we prefer to call it. This year planting did not take nearly as long as it has in the past, mostly because of the small amount that we had to plant. If you are a regular reader you probably remember that our harvest this year was much smaller than we had hoped, and that we had fewer bulbs that would be large enough to use as seed. We ended up with between 450 and 500 cloves planted. Much less than we have planted in years past.
A couple other things made our task easier. We try to rotate our crops at least every two years so this year we planted in a new location. We have not used this area for gardening in the past, but when my husband tilled the soil it was a moist loam which made pushing the cloves into the ground very easy. If the soil is too wet or too dry planting can be more difficult.
The other thing that made for light(er) work was this weed guard mat that we used. The mat is made from a heavy biodegradable, organic paper. It is pre-scored so that we could simply punch out the hole while pushing our garlic clove into the ground.
In past years we have not used the weed guard because we were concerned the mat would shift and the garlic sprouts would not be able to find their way through the holes.
To hold the mat in place my husband was able to get these broken or damaged paving stones from his landscaping job. While they might not have been suitable for building walkways or patios they were perfect for our needs. Remember One Man’s Trash Is Another Man’s Treasure.
Once we had the weed guard rolled out we were able to get the planting done much quicker than in past years when we have used 4×8 sheets of lattice for our planting grid.
After we planted all of the garlic we put a temporary fence around it as an added protection, because while the paver stones may keep the wind from blowing the weed guard they may not hold up as well against deer running across it.
Ideally the weed guard will serve to keep the weeds down and help the soil retain moisture, lessening the time and effort that we will have to spend watering and weeding next spring and summer.
So with a “WOO HOO” (I always say that when we finish planting garlic) and a prayer of thanks our 2020 garlic season is under way.
Thanks for visiting.