Paula is our good family friend who got me started in this whole mess of growing garlic by the simple phrase, “Don, why don’t you grow some garlic.” And here I am after a short few years expanding the operation at our hundred acre farm in the New Hampshire Lakes Region. But, of course, we all appreciate her encouragement toward this endeavor.
Paula and I together planted the first eight bulbs of cloves in our family garden area in southeastern Massachusetts when I really didn’t know what I was doing and was just hoping for the best. And while we don’t now grow many of the varieties we first planted, we certainly have gained a lot of growing experience and knowledge over the last few years and Paula continues to help us with popping, planting, weeding, and just being our good family friend. And of course she and her family are now the beneficiaries of some great tasting, naturally grown garlic, which maybe was her motive in the beginning! At any rate, thank you, Paula, for getting us started and we’ll be looking for your help every year from here on out! I can’t wait to get you on that tractor and show you how real farmers grow this stuff!
I first met Stan through his website online about three years ago. At that time I was seriously considering what varieties to grow in a meaningful way. We emailed back and forth a few times about what I should grow, and finally one day ten pounds of German White appeared on my doorstep to plant.
On Stan’s website is this phrase about German White: “This is the only variety that is truly necessary.” He could not be more right about German White garlic which now comprises over half of our entire garlic crop and we’ve taken that original ten pounds and turned it into hundreds of pounds in a very short period of time. It is absolutely a magnificent porcelain, produces huge cloves, and tastes great!
Over the years I have visited Stan’s farm a few times, talked with him countless numbers of times on the phone, and last year even tracked him down at his winter home in Florida. I’m sure his wife was thrilled about that. But over all this time, Stan has been a very good mentor to me for growing garlic. He has always been there to assist me in answering my questions and sharing his long-time experience in nurturing this crop to its full potential. I consider both Stan and his wife Adeline good friends and would urge anyone to buy their garlic seed stock from his farm at www.alphagarlicfarm.com. Believe me, his success in this industry warrants no endorsement from me, but I believe in giving gratitude to those folks who have assisted me in getting started in this business. Please take a look at this short video that a local television station from the Mohowk Valley put together on Stan. I think it will give you a flavor of the man and his farm.
Petey is one of our neighbors across the street from us. He is one of the smartest eight-year-old youngsters you will ever meet. You only have to tell him once how to do something and he duplicates the task with precision. Two years ago he started helping me in the garlic field removing scapes. This past year he helped us harvest and bundle a whole bunch of German White. I think Petey has a job on the farm going forward as long as he wants to work with us. He does seem to like hanging around with us older folks … which in turn makes us feel younger with his great sense of humor and his smiling face. We are deeply appreciative of Petey being our friend, neighbor, excellent helper, and hope he continues to enrich all of our lives in us being around him.