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If You Don’t Plant It, It Won’t Grow



In the next coming weeks, the weeds will begin to start showing up at our little garlic patch. Oh, what fun. But before we get to that exciting extract of the Garlic Guys life, let me tell you about what’s been going on lately here on the farm. And let me introduce myself as well.

This is Cate. Hi! I’m the unacknowledged Garlic Guy. Why? Frankly, because I’m not, well, a guy. Haha. There’s a problem being one of four “Garlic Guys” and not being a guy. When we started this business, we had to come up with a name. And it took us forever. The most favored name we’d come up with was The Garlic Guys (which I didn’t particularly love, for obvious reasons). Now I could never be one of the faces of the company, and well, there it is. The Garlic Guy who isn’t. Ahh, well, what’s done is done. And it really is a good name.

These past few weeks have been full of, guess what, garlic. As Shannon was saying, the weather had foiled our plans again and again in December. Even though it looked hopeful that we’d get it done that month, it snowed. A lot. And since it stayed cold for an abnormal amount of time for Colorado, the snow stayed on the ground and didn’t melt… for months.

Our “little” garlic patch has grown from the one acre we had last year to five acres this year. Crazy. What do you do when you have to plant, weed, and harvest all that? You don’t do it by hand, that’s for sure. Travis has concocted (that’s a little exciting of a word to use for the object he put together, but it’s such a good one, I couldn’t resist using it) a new and improved planter that works quickly and efficiently. Yes! If I had to plant five acres of garlic by hand, I truly don’t think I would have made it. Way to go, Travis. But, even with Travis’ contraption (Contraption. It’s not a machine. We’ve gone over that many times here on the farm. No moving parts, no machine.), it’s five acres of garlic out there. Which means that though his invention sped things up immensely, we still had to put in hundreds of man hours into planting.

So what do you do out in the field, eight hours a day, for two weeks? You’d think we’d get bored, huh? Not with the Garlic Guys there… Chris would get on the tractor to drive, and Ryan, Travis, or my sister Grace, and I would stand on a metal frame attached to the back. Chris would shout back, “Ready?” and we’d reply “Ready!” (although by the end of the week, we most definitely said it without the exclamation point) and then start our little game again. I’d say, “Freddy.” Grace, “Yeti.” Ryan, “Teddy.” And so on in a circle until we got to the end of the row. Oh yes, you had to be creative to think of yet another something that rhymed with “ready” when your turn came around again. I do believe we discovered every word that rhymed with “ready”, “stick”, and “blue” in the entire dictionary. And some that weren’t in there as well…

But that’s not all. By no means. There were always jokes and riddles. Do you know how few good riddles people have thought up? And how many dumb ones? We quickly ran out of the good ones, (guessing, or desperately pleading for the answers) and moved on to the dumb ones. Or Ryan and Travis did. Grace and I didn’t think they were quite as funny as they thought they were.

“So, guys, what’s brown and sticky?”

“Umm… syrup.”

“No.”

“Uh, yes”

“Ok, fine, yes syrup. But that’s not the answer.”

So, we guessed for a while. There are so many things that are brown and sticky. It’s not funny. But eventually…

“So it grows on a tree. And it’s not leaves.”

“Yeah.”

“The trunk.”

“Close.”

“A branch.”

“No.”

“A twig.”

“So close. What’s another name for it?”

“But we’ve guessed every name for… Oh… Oh. A stick… ” We started to laugh.

“A stick is brown and sticky… But that’s so stupid!”

And we laughed anyway. Just because it was all so ridiculous.

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And then there were songs. Aerosmith’s “I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing,” Phantom of the Opera, various YouTube videos we’d seen such as “The Duck Song 1, 2, and 3” Oh yes. Great selection, right? It was beautiful. Haha. You should have heard us singing. If you can call what we did to those poor songs singing. We listened to our “pump up” music too. Generally the Rocky theme. Fun times…

But, however silly we may be in our conversation, the planting of the garlic was done with genuine intent. Now it’s all in the ground. Even starting to come up! All growing well. And the Guys are starting to build on an idea to make weeding faster and not as tedious. More on that next time.

Have a great week! May your garlic grow strong and tall. That is how we say goodbye to each other here on the farm. Okay, not really. I just made that up. But it sounds good,  right?