news from
the garden

Nootka Rose Garlic Crop

March 1, 2012

No matter how many times you’ve done it, it’s always great to see the garlic finally emerge from the frozen tundra… and the toughness of garlic is truly amazing. As usual, the silverskins are first (Nootka Rose pictured). Big John is especially happy with this crop… planting situation and field conditions (moisture) were better than ever last fall. Winter was not extreme one way or the other… plenty of moisture in the field now. Everything points to an outstanding crop for 2012!

Splitting Garlic

October 22, 2011

Thumb-splitting time at Big John’s…. here are about 1,500 pounds of bulbs that all were “painfully split” and hand planted… and this was no small job…. just ask those that did it. Conditions in the garden were excellent and the crop was irrigated right after planting to insure a strong start.

Red Toch Garlic Harvest

August 2, 2011

All the 2011 garlic is harvested and hanging in the barns! Though a slightly later year, the quantity and quality is excellent. Big John would like to give a Big Thanks to this year’s harvest crew with special recognition to the real McCoy’s… true gems from Arizona. And check out the huge Red Toch.

Redneck Wild

July 5, 2011

Redneck Wild has definitely found a home in Western PA. In this picture, Mary from Jeannette shows off both her granddaughter and her magnificent crop of freshly harvested Wild. She must be doing everything right. Big John is receiving snapshots and plaudits from all parts of the country praising this remarkable Rocambole strain.

Inchelium Red

May 1, 2011

Here is some great feedback from Leslie Doyle of Las Vegas, a very innovative grower of Big John’s Inchelium Red. Read her story below:

“Here is a pic of me and your Inchelium Red garlic – this is 3 of 7 garlic test beds. It is May 3, 2011 in Las Vegas, NV, and I think the garlic is looking pretty good. I weighed and separated the cloves by size. The rows are marked with clove weight and planting date. I planted over a 4-month period at the ends of Sep through Dec. by following the recommended moon planting dates for bulbs. I hope to find more accurate info on; If there is a relationship to planting dates and clove size to harvested bulb size. Present information for best dates to plant garlic in Las Vegas is vague. With this test I hope to add some clarity to this.”
Leslie Doyle

Garlic Crop Increased

November 18, 2010

Big John is happy to report the 2011 garlic crop has been planted and mulched under ideal conditions! In response to a large expansion of the customer base, the crop was increased by 30%. Once the cloves were all in the ground, an inch-and-a-half of steady rain followed… timing is everything. Then we tucked it all in for the winter with a very nice, uniform blanketing by Garlic Master John Bair.

Redneck Wild

July 19, 2010

Here is the first pic of Redneck Wild still in her work clothes. She has finally come out of hiding to make her debut! There will be lots of 3 inch garlic by the time we’re done. This might be the finest looking garlic Big John has ever seen. Go to the Redneck Wild page.

Introducing Redneck Wild

May 13, 2010

Redneck Wild is a new variety of hardneck garlic being offered for the first time in 2010! We found this “wild” garlic growing in a privately owned wetland in Klamath County. When and how the garlic was introduced to the wetland is unknown, although the wetland itself was identified in a photograph from 1906. In an effort to protect the garlic beds and to reduce the risk of transferring disease we collected the bulbils or aerial clones from the flower stalk of the “wild” garlic and planted them on our farm. Garlic rounds were harvested, dried and used for seed in the next fall planting. This process is both time and labor intensive but it is necessary to ensure that the wetland garlic bulbs are not disturbed and to keep Redneck Wild as close to the “wild” mother plants as possible. Check out the Redneck Wild page for more info and ordering.

Garlic and Shallots

July 28, 2009

The garlic and shallots are all in the barns! Big John is very pleased with the ’09 crop – both for size and quality – this also seemed to be a very good year for the Silverskins. The harvest crew from the last day is pictured below… missing are Maria and Bianca Arreola, stalwarts both. This year’s “rookie of the year” is Alex Ramirez (hatless in the middle, grey shirt). Hope we can capture him for the planting season as well!

Great Garlic Crops

June 24, 2009

With Mt. Shasta in the background, the 2009 crops are not only picturesque but growing like mad. On a quiet morning, you can hear the garlic grow. Big John is expecting great yields. Cooler, wetter spring brought the crop along more slowly… not the sudden winter to summer jump like most years.

The garden was particularly blessed by the presence of Jay and Patty, important customers, from Fort Wayne Indiana. They seemed impressed with the garlic and left high hopes for the fall.

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