news from
the garden

Big John Goes Hollywood

April 14, 2016

Grace-and-frankieLate last summer Big John was contacted by the props manager for the Netflix TV program Grace & Frankie who was frantically searching for “whole” braidable garlic plants with scapes attached. Trying to explain the impossibility of this, we settled on some scaped-out silverskins that always appear on the edge of the field – long story short – the episode identified as 211 will be available on May 6th! Big John goes Hollywood! Emmy?

2016 Looking As Good As Ever!

April 4, 2016

Super Winter Water Year – Great Temps – Crop off of to a wonderful start. Order Early to ensure quality and supply!P8160005

Great Harvest of 2014

July 12, 2014

Big John is particularly pleased with the size and quality of the 2014 crop. Chesnok Red was as good as ever, but the artichokes were especially large. Shown here is some beautiful Lorz Italian

November 24, 2013

February 8, 2014


Finally gave up waiting for more rain… putting the mulch on. We are so lucky to have the use of this side-discharging manure spreader that belongs to my garlic partner who used to be an organic dairy farmer. Kinda hard to see, but he can lay out a blanket evenly to our “specs”. Plus, no hand work. Weather around the country is wacky… extreme drought here in S. Oregon and N. California. Never have seen it this dry.

April 23, 2013

Cover cropping is very important to soil tilth, fertility and whatever rotation schedule you practice. Here, Big John is cross-drilling organic Alpowa white wheat – crossdrilling at half the overall seeding rate will thicken the stand, smother weeds and distribute vegatative more uniformly at time of “incorporation” – another way of saying cut/dry/rototill the green material (green manure) into the soil.

Steve Sprinkel Honored – April, 2013

April 15, 2013


Kudos from the Cornucopia Institute to one of Big John’s oldest friends – high school classmate – organic activist since the dark ages, rider of overhead surf, organic farmer/restaurant/market owner with wife Olivia (The Cook) and all-purpose journalist, Steve Sprinkel (The Farmer). He authored the great piece “why organic?” page Big John’s website and is an ongoing friend of “The Garden”. See F&C empire at

March 2013 Mulch Patching

March 18, 2013

Warm snap in the 60’s for a few days after one of the coldest winters in many years – here is Garlic Master Filiberto “mulch– patching” – a few thin spots created by wind blast – the garlic is busting through all over!

2013 Garlic Popping Up

March 18, 2013

As usual, the Silverskins (Silver White, here) lead the way – garlic is tougher than nails – has to be to make it through this past winter – some shallots are showing as well. Be reminded – those that order earlier will generally get the bigger garlic. And remember the basic rule: BIG GARLIC MAKES BIG GARLIC.

Chesnok Red and Lorz Italian bulbs

July 20, 2012

“Big John couldn’t be happier with the size and quality of the 2012 garlic crop. Drying space is nearly used up! The Chesnok Red is especially nice. Shown here are some pretty Lorz Italian bulbs.”

Green Garlic

May 29, 2012

Green Garlic is great, fun and easy. It has great garlic flavor and is useful in all kinds of dishes. You can grow it anywhere and any time of the year. You can grow it in containers. You can grow it indoors. You can use your small and ugly cloves. At any time of the year you can bury your “rejects”… outside… or in pots… anywhere. Depending on how warm it is, you can have 10”-12” garlic in just a few weeks. Since bulb development is not a concern, you can use at about any stage of maturity.”

“If you grow a fair amount of garlic then you are familiar with witch brooms… where vampires don’t tread… and where multiple shoots emerge from what you thought was a single clove. Some are pictured growing here. They occur most often in the softneck silverskins where clove separation can be difficult and lots of doubles and triples can occur. They will not produce a nice bulb. it is usable garlic, but not overly saleable, so why not use them for green garlic?”
Thanks! BJ

about big john's garden
organic certification
why organic?

news/infogrow your ownshop onlinereviewslinks & resourcescontact