I’m thrilled to have a piece in the summer issue of Edible Grand Traverse just in time for this year’s garlic harvest!
These three, helping me.
Bringing the garlic in again.
Another nine-month season of growing,
coming full circle.
Oh, I have so many thoughts about growing garlic. But this year, garlic speaks to me of forgiveness.
Taking a single clove from last year’s
soil and pushing it into the ground
just before winter
and hoping it will grow it into a new, full head –
come what may.
Through autumn leaves falling,
and snow storms,
and spring cold,
it grows silently
or maybe sits and waits
offering at last
in deep summer,
the smell of forgiveness.
This is what the “lawn” looks like after six weeks away.
And the garden is a jungle. But at least there is kale growing in the jungle. And lots of garlic. Oh, and volunteer plants I would have weeded out weeks ago. How I love the volunteers. And so they get to stay. Nasturtiums in the garlic beds. Cosmos in the onions. Calendula everywhere. Hundreds of borage plants for the bees.
The garden is wild. The children have not brushed their hair in days. The puppy is happy.
The chickens are settling back in.
And sometimes Amabel and I spend the morning collecting beautiful bits of plants and arranging them just so, creating this lovely, yet rather pointless assortment . . . instead of weeding, but . . . it’s lovely here, in the jungle, isn’t it?
214 cloves in the ground. And just in time; it’s supposed to snow 6 inches the day-after-tomorrow!
I couldn’t have done it without the help of my beautiful girls. I believe they are coming to love the rhythm of growing garlic nearly as much as I do. These magical cloves will meditate underground all winter and greet us early in the spring. In nine months time, we will pull them out of the earth and give thanks for their gift of abundance once again.
I have a lot to learn from garlic this year: stillness, quiet, solitude, patience.