Growing garlic is pretty easy, and can save you a ton of money especially if you use a lot, but these 6 garlic growing tips (from the pros) will ensure that you get the BIGGEST, baddest garlic crop ever! These tips are taken straight from the most seasoned gardeners and will yield some beautiful, big garlic heads that will impress all of your gardener friends!
6 Garlic Growing Tips
#1. Plant Garlic in Autumn
Fall through spring is the best season for growing garlic. Garlic should optimally be planted in the fall because it will develop its roots quickly, and therefore will be well established once winter comes. As soon as the soil starts to warm up, they'll quickly start growing and by the beginning of summer, you'll be rewarded with a bountiful harvest.
#2. Plant Two or More Different Varieties
Every year, try to plant different varieties. Some really great varieties are Music and Bogatyr which are basically giant bulbs with a ton of flavor! But a word of warning: small and medium sized varieties store better than larger varieties, so choose varieties that go with your local climate!
#3. Plant Large Single Cloves
Large cloves provide abundant food reserves for growing garlic seedlings, so it's always best to choose outer cloves. Be careful of very large cloves that can often split into two though, as they may grow two very tightly spaced twin plants which will produce lopsided bulbs.
#4. Mulch Through Winter
Garlic hates weeds and will not grow well if not properly mulched. Lay some straw mulch around your garlic crop in the winter to prevent weeds and keep them warm. Mulching will also help keep the nutrients in.
#5. Prepare for Pests and Diseases
Usually, garlic crops will not be affected too much by pests or diseases, but it CAN happen. Keep an eye out on soil borne diseases ( onion white rot), and onion root maggots which can appear out of nowhere. To keep this from happening, keep a close eye on your crop, and, if needed, place a row cover barrier.
#6. Cure Dry and Dirty
To store garlic bulbs, it's very important that you remember NOT to wash the harvested bulbs. Washing them will discolor in storage. But it is a good idea to trim off roots and green leaves soon after harvest, which will quicken the drying process.
So now that you know these 6 garlic growing tips from the pros, it's time to roll up your sleeves and get to planting!