Friday, March 8, 2013

Double Your Dollar with Green Onions and Garlic Scapes

If you haven't gotten your spring garlic and onion sets in the ground yet, good news, you still have time!  And by using my method, you can get more bang for your buck.

Here is what you will need:
  • Loose rich soil, preferably a raised bed or container.  Compact soil limits bulb growth.
  • Compost to amend your soil with and provide plenty of fertilizer.
  • Onions and garlic.  You choose your family's favorite varieties.  I planted about 50 white onions, 50 red onions, 50 Vidalia onions and about 30 garlic cloves. 

Yes, just as I suspected,
the chickens have been here and have dug up some of my bulbs. 
Its okay, I will forgive them, I think I planted more than enough!

Getting Bulbs:

You should be able to find these at any nursery, farm service store and some hardware stores.  I even saw that our Wal-Mart had some the other day, I doubt they would have the variety that a nursery or other store would, but they will eat just the same.  

A Red Onion Set

Planting Bulbs:

The most important thing for great garlic and onion production is rich, loose soil. 
If the soil is too compact, the bulbs will not have any room to grow. 

These bulbs have fairly shallow roots and most sources say to plant them four inches apart, BUT I will let you in on my SUPER SECRET method for DOUBLING my harvest:

 from EVERY OTHER bulb
use them as FRESH 

Ok, maybe that wasn't such a secret, but it is an awesome way to always have green onions and garlic scapes on hand, practically all summer long. 

Just think no more, "Oh crud, I forgot to buy green onions for the fresh salsa"
Just run outside with your scissors and harvest away!

Onions and garlic are so easy to care for; if you have some extra dirt, you can grow them with very little effort.  Just keep them moderately watered, they can take some drought and keep them in a weeded area.  They would be great to incorporate into a raised flower bed, herb garden or a large container with other deeper rooted plants.

You will be ready to harvest the full grown bulbs mid summer when the greens that you see above the ground turn brown and start to fall over.
Garlic beginning to sprout, just look at those tastey scapes!