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Plant Garlic in the Fall for a Larger, Healthier Crop

8/24/2010 10:20:00 AM

Tags: garlic, fall gardening, fall crops

If you’ve tried growing garlic and your bulbs turned out small, it might be because you planted it in spring. If you want full-sized bulbs bursting with great garlic flavor, plant your garlic in the fall and harvest it the next summer.

Garlic is a cold-hardy root veggie, and in most climates, you’ll get much better results with fall planting.

Try to plant your garlic about a month before your ground freezes, so the plants have time to get established. During winter, the crop will go dormant; then once spring and warmer temps roll around again, your plants will experience a burst of growth. By summer harvest time, you’ll marvel at the success of your crop!

Fall Garlic 

This photo illustrates the size difference between spring-planted garlic (left), which pales in comparison to the impressive fall-planted batch (right).

For more information about planting and growing great garlic, see All About Growing Garlic


Shelley Stonebrook is MOTHER EARTH NEWS magazine’s main gardening editor. She’s passionate about growing healthy, sustainable food and taking care of our environment. Follow her on Twitter, Pinterest and .

Photo by Sean Rosner 



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Post a comment below.

 

TinaMarsoC
10/22/2013 1:08:09 PM
Can I plant garden indoors in Boulder, CO?

jana
10/18/2013 1:20:38 PM
Do we plant garlic in shade, sun, partial?

jana
10/18/2013 1:19:53 PM
Do we plant garlic in shade, sun, partial?

MICHELEM
10/18/2013 10:27:58 AM
Does this work with onions as well? need help with this please please someone tell me.

krze
10/18/2013 7:39:24 AM
Hi I was wondering if planting garlic in an area that had squash bugs might help rid of them as well???? Anyone! :)) krze

krze
10/18/2013 7:39:18 AM
Hi I was wondering if planting garlic in an area that had squash bugs might help rid of them as well???? Anyone! :)) krze

Wayne
9/22/2012 2:32:38 PM
Can this be done in containers?

Carol Spooner
9/12/2012 2:30:54 AM
What about shallots? Do you treat them like garlic? Plant in the fall before frost? I live in N. California

Ronnie Maiden
8/27/2010 11:52:18 PM
You can grow garlic in So. Fla. Dig the ground in the fall before frost (if you get any; if you don't, you can still grow it, you just may not get size). Amend soil as necessary (manure, compost, etc). Plant individual cloves (keep the skin on it) approx. 1 1/2-2" inches deep, at least 3" apart--note that the pointy part is the top, the part of the clove that is attached to the bulb is the bottom, where the roots come out. Here in central/No. CA, I can plant anywhere from Sept-Jan; I get best results from planting late Oct-early Dec. Mulch a couple or three inches before the heat begins. If the garlic begins to flower (round stem with a pointed top, may be curly), cut or snap it off--this is called a scape and it is edible, look online for recipes, they are tasty--as it will rob nutrients from the bulb and the bulb will not size up well. When the top 1/3 of the plant begins to dry, stop watering. Harvest when tops are mostly dry-looking. You can get info online, especially from Filaree Farms. Yes, one can grow garlic in pots, but it won't do nearly as well. The cool thing is--YOU CAN EAT THE LEAVES! Some people pot garlic for this reason. Just snip off the amount you like (think chives, and yes, I know about garlic chives, not the same). The small young, tender, bulbs are yummy, even without curing. When I've roasted these (I put bulbs of garlic underneath chicken I'm roasting), the skins are so tender it is not necessary to peel them before eating. Good luck.

Joe Flo_2
8/27/2010 1:53:05 PM
I live in So. Fla. Can I grow garlic here?? and how? inside or out in the heat? what time of year dod I plant a bulb? thanks, Joe

rita_15
8/27/2010 11:58:08 AM
I live in a condo in north india. Can I grow garlic in pots? and when should I plant. Dec and Jan are the only cool mon ths here. Also where can I buy parseley and basil seeds (italian variety) in India (New Delhi)

sandra pendergrass_1
8/27/2010 10:14:02 AM
garlic is not only good for us, it also helps keep mosquitoes off

Dick_8
8/27/2010 9:14:25 AM
We live outside Syracuse,NY in zone 5 and plant our crop around Sept 20.We grow hardneck and softneck and when harvesting make sure you pull the softneck 2 weeks before the hardneck or it will split open and can't be used for braiding.We give the braids to family and friends but won't be this year because I pulled it too late.

Mike_99
8/25/2010 7:07:51 PM
I live in New Jersey and plant fall garlic and shallots the same time in Mid-October. Always get a great crop of both. Be sure to use plenty of compost when planting. I also side dress with composted chicken manure in early spring when the garlic shoots break ground in early March.







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