Tuesday, January 6, 2015

My garlic is sprouting!

Yes, another garlic post (ad nauseum).

I have a serious problem with this stuff. Either I have too little or too much. Still, much better to have too much than too little.

In the last few (say, five or ten) years I've started planting garlic. I tried growing it inside, but that didn't work well. Instead I save the largest cloves and plant 120 + outside each fall to grow through the winter. It's harvested in late June or early July.

So a few days ago I looked at my stored garlic and it was sprouting! In January?!

Good grief.

No one's been sick this year (at least not the kind of sick that garlic can help) and we haven't been cooking nearly as much. About once a month I sit down at the kitchen table and crush up a bunch of garlic in olive oil, then we cook with that. Simple and quick, still fresh, and SOOOO good.

So I have several pounds of garlic that are starting to sprout. I took a bunch of it to church to give away and I'm trying neighbors and friends, but I still have a lot. I'll keep searching out the sprouts and drying/crushing/giving them away.

I went looking online for ways to keep the stuff from sprouting, but apparently once garlic decides it's time to sprout nothing short of cooking or freezing will stop it.

One site said to keep it between 40 and 60 degrees, saying that temps lower than this will encourage sprouting and higher temps will delay spring sprouting. Nope. Sorry. Wrong answer. We keep our house at 68-72 degrees and it still starts sprouting in January.

Another site said keep it in the dark, but I've tried that as well with no luck.

I think the best answer was probably "There's really no way to do this, short of keeping the temperature at precisely 32 degrees, and even that is questionable." :)

My garlic outside is visible through six inches of snow, so obviously it's doing well. In spite of the "too much garlic" problem, I'm looking forward to my spring harvest.

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