Garlic Growers Rejoice! Introducing Garden Mat #9
Growing garlic is something a lot of our customers take very seriously. So much so, our customers finally convinced us to add a new mat pattern specifically for garlic. So here it is. Introducing Garden Mat #9.
A little background: For several years home gardeners and commercial garlic growers have wanted Mat #1 with a fifth row of holes right down the middle. It makes perfect sense. Why waste the space? Especially if you are serious about growing garlic.
A little more background and here I must confess completely. I secretly have been using a Mat #9 pattern for garlic for sixteen years in our own gardens. I just never advertised it. But once people started coming regularly for garden tours, over the years we had more and more requests to make the same mat and in the last two years it seems the word really got out. For example, we had one customer, a commercial grower from Canada who made visit a few years ago and immediately placed a large order. And today, from word of mouth, we have fifteen growers in the same region, all using the pattern that is now Mat #9.
We are introducing Mat #9 now, because fall is the perfect time of year in the North to plant garlic; any time between September and when the ground is frozen. But, the sooner the better. If you wait until next spring, your bulbs will not be as large.
These are generally the only Garden Mats we leave out 365 days a year. Granted, they will not last as long as the rest of our Garden Mats, which we pull up at the end of the season, hose off, roll up and store for the winter. But if left out year round our mats last about eight years (not bad) if you take care of them.
Once a year in the fall, when we are ready to plant, we pull back the mats, till in some good compost or manure, rake the surface smooth and put the mats back down. Then we plant one garlic clove per hole, about 1 ½” deep, root side down. We grow 300 bulbs of garlic a year. It generally takes about 30 to 60 minutes to prepare the soil and then another 30 minutes to plant. After that, there is virtually no weeding and nothing left to do but let them grow. Garlic is one of the first things that pops up in the spring. After that, all we do is finger pluck weeds a few minutes each week. We generally weed our 300 plant bed about 30 minutes to 40 minutes an entire year!! Garden Mats make growing garlic that easy.
If you are a commercial grower, you definitely should use Garden Mats. We have commercial growers that grow 6,000 bulbs a year. Garden Mats are much less expensive than straw mulch, which often produces its own weeds. All of our commercial growers swear by Garden Mats, like Stewart Clark, who emailed us the following picture and testimonial:
Here is what Stuart Clark wrote:
I’ve been meaning to write for some time…… We have gardens in the Connecticut Valley in Massachusetts. I just finished planting 600+ garlic plants down here; a bit late, but they were unaffected by my late-planting last year and there was no snow cover during the winter……..
Peter, every time I go near my garlic bed I am so grateful for your Garden Mats. My oldest mats are about 4 years old and show no sign of ultraviolet damage. Laying out the garlic (or onion) sets is so much easier with the mats. The best thing is they eliminate almost all the weeding!
I’ll be expanding my garden next year (got a great price for my garlic this year), so will pick-up a couple more.