I’ve been enjoying garlic since I was a kid. My grandmother couldn’t resist adding it to everything as it offered fantastic health perks. A bit of garlic also made her Friday night dinners taste amazing.
My favorite way to enjoy garlic would be with homemade bread and warm melted butter. Serve it with pasta and all is right in my world.
Course these days I’ve pushed carbs aside and now prefer fresh grated garlic over protein foods like fish, beef, and pork.
So, needless to say we go through quite a bit of garlic which has led me to plant some in my garden.
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Begin Planting Garlic in the Fall
Garlic is pretty easy to grow if you begin at the right time of the year, which is fall. Specifically, mid-October through mid-November.
You can also plant later but you risk a smaller harvest. So, let’s keep this simple and break things down into zones to remove any confusion.
Garlic Planting Zone Break Down
- Zones 3 – 5 Late September to Early October
- Zones 5 -7 Mid October
- Zones 7 -9 Mid October – Mid November
- Zones 9 -10 Late October into December
Now that we have that out of the way you need to first acquire some healthy garlic bulbs. Shop at your favorite nursery or shop online like I did because it was much easier.
I found 9 oz. California soft neck garlic bulbs for planting and eating from amazon. I’m pretty impressed with the quality and have plenty for planting and several for dinner prep.
To Begin Planting In Raised Beds
- First Choose a raised bed with well- drained soil and a lot of newly added organic matter, need ideas read here
- If you really need help with your soil you may also enjoy, How to Amend Soil Naturally here.
- Keep in mind too much moisture from winter rains can harm your crop so raised beds like these here would be a great option.
- Set unpeeled cloves root side down 4 – 6 inches in rows of 1.5 to 2 inches apart.
- Then cover with 1-2 inches of soil.
- In colder climates cover with mulch for winter protection.
Mulch options can include wood chips, leaves or even hay/straw. Smaller leaves would be perfect because they tend to settle over the soil without continuing to fly with the wind.
Caring for Garlic Over Winter
Here in Texas it can get pretty cold from January and part of February so I will also be covering my crop opting to use leaves because we have plenty.
When we approach the end of winter and temperatures begin to increase then I can remove the excess so there’s a thin layer covering the soil.
The mulch will help to control any weeds that may surface and maintain an even moisture ratio. Remember to keep weeds down because they don’t compete well with garlic.
Late winter and early spring will be when they start to grow really well, this is also when you don’t want to over water. I like to let the rain work for me during this period and fill in when necessary.
Harvesting will begin around late June – August when green stalks begin to turn brown, this will vary based on your planting zone and the weather.
I find that growing in raised beds is always much easier and what a joy it will be to have this healthy herb developing close to home.
Happy Garlic planting and if you haven’t ordered bulbs yet, remember you can get California Soft Neck Garlic right here.