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stella1751
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Whine: Garlic

So, I was planting garlic today. I bought some hardnecks, got them way back in August, and have been waiting for just the right day to plant them. I'm pretty excited about these. I grew softnecks for two years and felt I was ready for the big leagues.

When they arrived in August, I gave a bulb of each kind to my neighbor. She is a great neighbor and loves garlic! She's been having a rough year, though. This summer, she only planted half of what she planted last year, and what she planted was soon overgrown with weeds. She bought a mess of bareroot strawberries at the same time I did, but she kept them in the fridge too long, and they died.

So, when I ran out of cloves to make my rows even, it occurred to me that she probably wouldn't plant hers, so I could hit her up for the Northern White bulb to even out my last Northern White row. Yes, I know it was rude, but I'm a madwoman for even rows. I even use a yardstick to make certain everything is just so.

I decided to chance it. If she wasn't going to plant them, well, why let them go to waste? I went over to ask her for the Northern White back. She could keep the Northern Giant; I wanted only the Northern White.

She looked sheepish and told me she ate them. Both of 'em. How do you eat long-coveted seed garlic, the kind you couldn't find in Casper if you used a garlic detector?

Whew. Thanks for letting me gripe. No response is necessary. I'm just vastly annoyed, and I needed to vent :evil: I'm now the garlic Nazi. When she wants fresh garlic next year, I will say, "No garlic for you!"
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applestar
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:lol: to both!

Marlin, that is a crime.

Stella, I'm sorry but your neighbor just is not a gardener.

Your "rant" has made me think of one of the Little House stories when a neighbor -- Laura's future beau -- had hidden seed wheat in the walls but then there was famine in town....

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stella1751
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I don't eat much garlic. Two bulbs will get me through the winter. I just like growing it. The first time I saw those little spikes, all green and perky, sticking up through the snow on a 20-degree day, I knew garlic would be my new robin, the sign of spring, a sign the soil had thawed and was ready to be worked.

This year, I split what I grew into half: half for her and half for the mailman. Next year, she's out of the equation. I like her. She's a great neighbor. However, you just don't eat seed garlic! It's not a done thing.

I finished out the row with some softneck I had left over from last year. Otherwise, I will forget and wonder what ate my cloves at the end of that row :shock:
"Imagination is more important than knowledge." -- Albert Einstein

vermontkingdom
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I say, give her another chance. I'm sure, somewhere along the line, you too, have make a huge gardening mistake. She's a good neighbor so forgive and forget. But if it happens again, overwhelm her with free zucchinis.

The thing that bothers me most is the failure of people to return my canning jars. My wife, not having grown up with a canning mother as I did some 60 years ago, doesn't understand. She says the jar is a gift so why would they think returning it would be appropriate. She just doesn't understand canning etiquette! I give them one warning and then no more wonderful jam, salsa, pickles, relish, etc.
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rainbowgardener
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Wow! Gardeners certainly do get weird! :) It would never occur to me to worry about my rows being even. Mostly I don't even plant in rows, just pop things in wherever. Or maybe I start with a row, but then when it needs thinning, since I hate to throw nice plants away, I move the extras to spots in between the rows or wherever I can find somewhere to stick it, so the row is all messed up anyway. I don't think nature usually grows things in straight even rows! AND I do canning (though I certainly didn't grow up with a mother who did), so I give and also get from friends lots of different home canned stuff. It would never occur to me to return a canning jar or expect one to be returned (which has NEVER happened, so other people must be like me). When I get something in a pretty jar, I re-use it and probably gift it to someone, but not likely the person who gave it to me. By the time I'm re-using the jar, I probably don't even remember who gave it to me, unless it is particularly unusual.

Oh well, everyone has their own quoibles, and I'm sure I have plenty of my own! :)
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applestar
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I think if you are among a circle of canning friends, best thing to happen is that the canning jars get passed from one person to the next, filled with wonderful homemade goodness. Unfortunately for me, My efforts are sporadic at best and my friends are too. So we are still not at the level of overflowing bounty to give away. But maybe in a few more years.... 8)

On the other hand, I think it would be nice if people who don't can themselves would return the jars with an honest critique -- a little too sweet... Too sour... PERFECT! Remember us again next year! :D -- unless they are going to put them to good (re)use. I shudder to think they might be throwing them away or putting them out with their recycling. :shock:

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Tilde
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applestar wrote: I shudder to think they might be throwing them away or putting them out with their recycling. :shock:
Been there, done that, gave them freezer jam in plastic 'canning' jars from then on.
USDA Zone 10, Sunset Zone 25, 16 feet above sea level, surrounded by chem-turfers.

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rainbowgardener
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incidentally quoibles is a combination of quirks and foibles, in case anyone wondered! :)
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stella1751
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applestar wrote: On the other hand, I think it would be nice if people who don't can themselves would return the jars with an honest critique -- a little too sweet... Too sour... PERFECT! Remember us again next year! :D -- unless they are going to put them to good (re)use. I shudder to think they might be throwing them away or putting them out with their recycling. :shock:
Thank you for writing this. I feel strongly about this, but I guess I worried I was being too demanding. In past years, I took all my extras to the homeless shelter or the church. This year, mostly because I and my neighbors bonded while fighting a corporate invasion of our street, I instead doled everything out to my new and old friends.

With the exception of the mailman, I had to beg for a comment regarding taste or quality or lack thereof. Finally, I had enough. Mean me wrote all of them emails, telling them that what was left were some peppers I was experimenting with and wanted feedback on, that I would only give them to people who were willing to tell me what they thought.

Only one neighbor responded, the one who ate my seed garlic. I brought her a huge bag of peppers. She promised to let me know what she thought of them. I haven't heard from her, and I'll be darned if I will ask.

Next year, the mailman and either the homeless or the church will get my extras. I know it's a quoible, but it just feels like a common courtesy to comment!
"Imagination is more important than knowledge." -- Albert Einstein

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rainbowgardener
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stella1751 wrote: I know it's a quoible, but it just feels like a common courtesy to comment!
Sorry, stella, you and I are usually on the same page re gardening, which you are clearly wonderful at, but I really don't agree about this. My mother drilled it in to my head "if you can't say something nice, don't say anything."

If someone gave me a present of something homemade, I would die before saying gee thanks for the homemade jelly, but I really thought it was too sour. Only if they were my best friend AND they specifically asked me for honest feedback. Then I might say something like it was really nice, such a beautiful color, but maybe just a touch more sour than it needed to be (when it is pH 2!)

If I love it, I will tell them so. If I have any other opinion, I will just say thank you very much for the homemade goodies, so thoughtful to give the work of your hands. If I couldn't stand it and put it in the compost pile, I would still say the same thing. (I don't lie, I don't say I love it if I don't, I just keep my mouth shut and find something else to comment about.) That to me is common courtesy as I was taught it.

I think most people would have to have a whole lot of courage to venture any feedback beyond thank you.
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soil
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did you explain to her about the garlic? why its for planting and not eating.

i wouldn't care really, i handed out some chili peppers at the last local permaculture meeting, mentioning that they should be for seed, even if you eat the outer skin and save the seed.. even still 5 people came up to me a week later saying " that pepper was good, i ate the whole thing. can i get another for seed?" i just laughed and told them sure thing.

some people are a little crazy when it comes to gardening, they just need a break, or two lol.
For all things come from earth, and all things end by becoming earth.

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stella1751
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Rainbow, I know you are right. Even worse, I know I am wrong, that I expect too much. I was taught to equivocate. If someone gave me a pepper I thought tasted putrid, I would be certain to thank that person, profusely, the next time I saw him or her, saying, "The color on that pepper was extraordinary!" or "However do you grow peppers like that in our climate?!"

Soil, I laughed when I read your comment about the members eating the seed peppers. When I was in the sixth grade, my teacher came back from a trip to Mexico with a little box of Chiclets for each student. (I think this was before they became Americanized.) As he handed them out, he cautioned all of us, "Don't eat them. They are a souvenir."

The instant he left the room, the only sound that could be heard was cardboard tearing and gum cracking :lol:
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applestar
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I still only have very few extras to give away so the people who get them are very special people who I expect to be BRUTALLY honest with me.... :wink: (BTW my parents have no difficulty in this regard. :roll: :lol: )

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gixxerific
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Do you need some garlic to plant Stella.

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stella1751
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gixxerific wrote:Do you need some garlic to plant Stella.
No, Gix, but thanks for asking. We're under a deep blanket of snow right now, and I don't look for us to see highs above 45 again until March. I am sooo happy I planted this last weekend!

I finished out the rows with some softneck I had left over from this summer. I am old and forgetful. If I didn't finish out the rows with something, I would have thought the cloves I planted there (NOT) had died or been eaten.

I am so excited to finally be growing hardnecks! Look for me to be asking tons of questions about scapes next year. Funny. I went with a variety called Northern White rather than take Eric up on a generous offer of some Music. My reasoning was that wegrowgarlic said that the Northern White averaged 6 cloves per bulb, but Music only 5. Two of the four Northern White I kept for myself had 5 cloves, one had 4, and the other only 3, which is why I didn't have enough to finish my rows.

I also bought Northern Giants. By the way, don't let the name Northern Giant fool you. Those bulbs were half the size of the Northern White :roll:
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vermontkingdom
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One final comment on my hangup about having canning jars returned. On the label indicating ingredients I have the following in large letters, Reduce, Recycle and Return the Jar!

Each year I donate goodies to the Christmas Bazaar and July 4th Bazaar that our church puts on. People look forward to jars of Indian relish, Bread and Butter Pickles, Salsa, and various jams and things are sold quickly. So, maybe you can imagine how difficult it is for me, a jar recaller, to send 60 jars out knowing I'll never see most of them again.
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rainbowgardener
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Actually, I do understand. I never thought of asking for jars back, but I don't do nearly so many of them, just a few. But every year in the spring, I give a couple hundred little plants I started from seeds to my Quaker Meeting (church) to be sold as a fund-raiser. They are in little plastic pots. I always ask for the pots back and there is a sign right in front of them where they are being sold asking for the return of the pots (never thought about labelling the actual pots, maybe next year I will do that :) ). Somewhere between half and two thirds of them come back to me, but every year at least a third of them disappear. And your jars are WAY more expensive than my plastic pots, which I think cost me about a dime each.
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