A question about ruined garlic? Maybe?

JennySweet(7Ok)April 3, 2014

I planted several varieties of garlic last fall and they all are now about a foot tall. Okay I should say were...

I asked my teenage son to clean out the asparagus bed next to my garlic bed. I told him to clip the dead stalks to the ground and pull any weeds he found. When I went to check on his progress, he had clipped all the garlic stalks to the ground instead!! Needless to say I freaked out on him just a little bit.

My question is will they grow back? And if they do, will they be in time to harvest this year, or will they be to small?

Thanks everyone.

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Yes, they'll grow back. Whether they'll be big enough is subjective. We've harvested some pretty small heads before. Let the tops die completely down to get the most growth.Let us know how it turns out.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2014 at 9:02AM
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Hang in there. Kids and gardening go well together, though, sometimes it doesn't look like it. Figuratively, kids, too, are a "crop;" the most important one we can raise. One of my fondest memories of my Dad is of the time he sent me out to weed and I used one of those push type cultivators to RAZE his entire carrot patch!

When he came home and inspected my "work" he was obviously unhappy but also gracious, which made a BIG impression on me, as I knew what the garden meant to him.

Tahlequah, OK

    Bookmark   April 4, 2014 at 10:21AM
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Okiedawn OK Zone 7


I don't know who to feel sorrier for---your son or the garlic plants. I think both will recover just fine though. I feel kinda bad for him---clearly he was attempting to follow your instructions and it was just a matter of confusion over the location. I bet you he will never forget which bed is the asparagus bed and which one is the garlic bed....never, ever, ever.

Even if your bulbs are smaller than usual this year, you still should get a harvest. The plants have lots of time to regrow their green portions and, while that regrowth may divert energy that would have gone into forming the bulbs, that doesn't mean they won't give you a harvest.

Every gardening family has stuff like this happen from time to time. Sometimes these little occurrences that seem like major disasters at the time are the things you'll be remembering, talking about and laughing about 10 or 20 years later.

If I had a nickle for every plant we've accidentally damaged or destroyed while doing one sort of garden task or another, I'd have a few bucks in my piggy bank. Gardening is life. In life, stuff happens. This is one of those "stuff happens" type events.

It could have been worse---he could have pulled up the plants, disrupting their root systems, so at least that did not happen.

Garlic is pretty resilient, and so are kids.


    Bookmark   April 4, 2014 at 11:12AM
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Thanks guys! I thought they might be okay, but wasn't sure. My son was super sorry about it and after my initial freak out I told him I wasn't mad at at him. He and his sister helped me get the asparagus bed cleaned out and just in time too. I already have a few poking there heads out.

I'm sure we will laugh about this later and you're right Dawn, he will never forget what bed is where now. :)

    Bookmark   April 4, 2014 at 11:44AM
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My area was recently plowed including the garlic and onions. When I started weeding I found a few of each, some were really torn up. I planted and watered, for grins. Today, I see the stalks have reached up beyond the mulch. Quite amazing! Whether they bulb out is a different story.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2014 at 7:18PM
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I agree with everyone, here. Once established, garlic is hard to kill.

Be careful where you toss the smaller cloves that are too 'small' to bother with. If they get under some dirt, they'll grow right where ya tossed them.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2014 at 9:43PM
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