Monday, June 13, 2011

Garlic and Onion

First bulb of garlic

I grow a lot of onion. Besides onion, I also grow chives, garlic chives, and garlic. They are all related to onion and belong to Allium genus. I grow them for several reasona: 1. They are easy to grow, 2. They are essential in cooking, 3. They offer many health and medicinal benefits. "In in vitro studies, garlic has been found to have antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal activity. However, these actions are less clear in vivo. Garlic is also claimed to help prevent heart disease (including atherosclerosis, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure) and cancer. Garlic is used to prevent certain types of cancer, including stomach and colon cancers. In fact, countries where garlic is consumed in higher amounts, because of traditional cuisine, have been found to have a lower prevalence of cancer." (For more info, see Wikipedia)

Garlic patch

Last night my best friend asked me if I have a couple onions to spare. This morning I went out there to dig up some onions. The onions I have now are smaller than commercial onions because I didn't leave enough spacing. I just planted a bunch of seeds and didn't take the time to separate them. Since they were covered in dirt, I cut off the long roots and peeled off the outer layers. They are very pungent, so I am leaving them outside of the car until I am ready to drive up to visit my friend. Onions are very nutritious. Below is the nutritional chart of onion. For more info, please see Wikipedia.


I planted the garlic bulbs more than a year ago. Initially, they seemed to have died. Suddenly I saw them growing, so I proceeded to separate them. Now the green parts are drying up, so I know they are ready to harvest. Have you ever roasted garlic? A few years ago, I got several pounds of garlic bulbs from a Gilroy grower. I roasted about half of them and squeezed out all the roasted garlic pulp into a glass jar. I kept the roasted garlic mixed with olive oil in the fridge and used it for cooking. It always made the food taste and smell better. It's super easy to roast garlic. This is the recipe I used - Roasted Garlic Recipe.

For a brief period, I wondered whether it was worth my time to grow onions and garlic since they are very affordable in grocery stores. With all the food contamination outbreaks in recent years, I say it's well worth it. I know exactly how my vegetables are grown and what's in the soil. Additionally, who wants to go to the grocery store just for a few cloves of garlic?

Green onion patch

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