Several years ago my husband and brother-in-law were participating in the Customer in Residence program at the Thomas Moser studios in Freeport, Maine. If you aren’t familiar with Freeport it is the home of the Moser furniture empire and an old-fashioned outlet store town all wrapped up in one. It is also in one of the prettiest parts of our country. Husband was there to build a chair and I, and my sister, were there to get in some sister time and to shop. A perfect plan, I’d say.
While the guys were hanging out with the woodworkers, they learned one of the craftsmen was a grower of garlic. When he found out we also grow, or more accurately, had grown, garlic, he wanted to share what he had with us. I didn’t take a picture of what he gave us because I wasn’t sure it would amount to anything.
He gave us one clove of garlic to take home and plant. Yes, you heard that right.
One clove. One precious clove of his treasured heirloom garlic varieties, of which I can not, for the life of me, remember which one it is.
As soon as we got back to Michigan, among the winter dormant plants, I dug a small hole and planted that single clove of garlic. I then marked it with a spoon. Hoping no one would mistake it, come spring, for a weed and pull it or that the deer or squirrels would dig it up and destroy our entire crop. That was November 2009.
Come late summer, the one lonely stalk of garlic had somehow survived. We carefully dug him up and dried him and come November we broke apart the cloves and planted them. This time there were 7 cloves to plant.
Luckily they all took! The next November we proceeded to break the heads up and replant the cloves again beneath the gravel of our landscape and into the soil.
And this summer we had a great harvest. All 24 of stalks came up. We may have harvested them a bit late, there wasn’t much paper left on them to protect them, but they look really healthy, nonetheless.
And after *one* more year, we might venture to taste it. We should have enough then.
And just for the record, yes, you can usually smell us coming. Garlic is known for making your body odor garlicky smelling, that’s a fact that no one can escape. The thing that most people don’t realize about this smell is that it is the one responsible for making garlic such a health food.
So really…. we don’t just smell of garlic, we smell of health!
If you ever get a chance to visit Maine, Just Do It!!