HEIRLOOM GARDENER

Spuds, Not Duds

THREE YEARS AGO, I remember staring in bewilderment at the bright-green stem sprouting from my garlic bulb. The closest thing to gardening I had done up to that point was climbing barefoot into my family’s weedy raised bed scavenging tomatoes for my mother’s summer salads; I had no concept of how to sow, maintain, or harvest plants, much less how to store crops after they’d been plucked. So here I was years later, a college student baffled by the garlic on her kitchen counter.

What seemed odd to me at the time was simply the result of not properly storing a crop. And as I became a novice gardener, I discovered there’s more to the harvest-and-storage flow than grabbing a potato, dusting it off, and sticking it on the counter. In fact, the process of curing and storing is perhaps just as important as growing the plant. With a little bit of care and the right conditions, you can successfully prepare your crops for a long

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