Ornamental and edible gardening adventures.

Growing tip: Check your garlic stash

If you grew garlic this year, now is a great time to check on how it is drying (or curing). A little background: After harvesting in mid-July, I tied together all of my plants and hung them behind my back door to dry. (Space is a premium in my house. Other places you can dry them include attics, garages — basically a cool and dry spot.)

I checked on my bulbs the other day, and found that the leaves and roots were sufficiently dried out. Today I trimmed the stems back, leaving about 3-4 inches (7.62-10.16 cm), and I trimmed the roots, too. I brushed off as much soil as I could without removing the papery skin around the bulb.

If you plan to use them in the kitchen, keep them in a cool, dark spot until you need them. (I store mine in a brown paper bag in a cabinet.)

You can also replant the largest cloves from this year’s harvest for next year's plants. In my area, I will plant garlic in mid-October.

PRO tip: Garlic is a great plant to surround your tulip bulbs with — it helps deter voles.

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