Vermont School Garden

A visit to a Vermont public school garden through the seasons.

One More Planting Before Winter Sets In—GARLIC

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friends working together                                                                                    Nola and Maya separating garlic cloves.Garlic is inWe raked the straw that was still on our garden paths and recycled it to cover the garlic bed. We decided the straw was like the sheet for the winter and snow, soon to follow would be the ‘comforter’ for the garlic cloves sleeping under it. We’ll harvest the garlic in mid July.

The first trick learned when planting garlic is how to separate those little cloves from the “momma” bulb.  A supportive friend is helpful. But if you’re a budding farmer like Sabin, not yet five, you can figure this out in a snap! Sabin’s mom, Amy Rice Sciacca, has really given us support for next year’s garlic crop. First she bagged up 25 gallons of her horse manure. Then she and her kids  gave up a horse ride on a beautiful fall day and, instead came over to help us plant!

Sabin separating cloves

Sabin separating cloves

planting together 2

As our dear friend, Claudia McCarthy  taught us years ago, horse manure and a nice raised bed that looks a lot like a chocolate cake are the best ingredients for growing a good crop of garlic.  After planting cloves about 6 inches apart and covering them  over with soil, she always spread a thin cover of mulch straw. Her methods have never failed us.

planting together

a hand span apart

don't cover yet

now you can cover


Author: vermontschoolgarden

I have been an elementary teacher at the Westminster Center School for 30 years. For most of those years, I maintained a garden as part of my teaching curriculum resource. Now I am the Garden Coordinator for all of the Westminster Center School classrooms.

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