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How to Plant Garlic Successfully in The Fall Season



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How to Plant Garlic Successfully in The Fall Season

When planting individual cloves keep the peels intact, pointy end up, 2 inches deep and  6 inches apart.  Also mulch 5-8 inches deep with seedless straw.

Over the Winter the mulch will reduce to about 2 inches by Spring and this will help to keep the weeds down during the growing season.

How Long Do You Soak Garlic Before Planting?

When planting garlic cloves you should soak for at least 30 minutes up to overnight.  Many times we soak and are not able to plant the next day for various reasons, so leave them in the fertilization to soak up for up to 3 days.

How to Plant Garlic Successfully in The Fall Season
How to Plant Garlic Successfully in The Fall Season

How Do You Prepare Garlic for Soil?

To grow nice, big heads of garlic, you need loose, fertile soil. Loosen the soil with a digging fork, spread a 2- to 3-inch-deep layer of organic matter over the area, and dig it in. 

For organic matter, I use a well-aged mixture of compost, leaf mold, and aged rabbit manure.

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Is Wood Ash Good for Garlic?

Plants that thrive with a dressing of wood ash include garlic, chives, leeks, lettuces, asparagus, and stone-fruit trees.

How Do You Increase the Size of Garlic?

  1. Select the best variety for your region. Not all seed garlic grows equally well everywhere. …
  2. Prepare the soil for planting. …
  3. Plant the biggest cloves. …
  4. Give them room to grow. …
  5. Keep growing garlic cool. …
  6. Plenty of water. …
  7. Weed your garlic beds. …
  8. Remove scapes right away.

Why Is My Garlic so Small?

In most cases, it is likely that your plants just aren’t ready to be harvested yet. … Extremes in weather can also cause garlic plants to be stunted, which may include a small, underdeveloped bulb. Pests, including onion thrips and nematodes in the soil, may cause similar stunting.

How Long Does Garlic Take to Grow?

Garlic should be ready to harvest around the seven to eight-month mark after being planted. Some signs to look out for include green leaves that are turning brown and the flower stems will get soft. around seven to eight months

How do I know when garlic is ready to harvest?

When the lower two or three leaves turn yellow or brown, bulbs are ready to harvest. If you wait too long beyond this point, your bulbs won’t have as many protective layers around cloves, which means they won’t store well. At the same time, the remaining leaves will probably be showing yellow or brown tips.

Should I let my garlic flower?

If you notice flowers forming you can remove them or leave them intact; either way, it should not affect the swelling of the bulb

What is Garlic?

Garlic is a perennial member of the onion family, Alliaceae, and is closely related to leeks, onions, shallots, and chives. All of these plants send up hollow, tubular (sometimes flattened) leaves from a bulb that grows below the ground. The leaves are followed by a flower stalk (scape), and then by the flower itself. Garlic may also produce “bulbils” – tiny bulbs that may begin to sprout, on the flower head. All parts of the garlic plant are edible, but the bulb is the most prized and useful in the kitchen.

The garlic bulb (or “head”) is an organ the plant uses to store food during adverse weather or over winter when the leaves cannot photosynthesize. It is divided into numerous fleshy cloves, each wrapped in a papery husk, which should be removed prior to eating. Each clove, if planted in early spring or autumn, will produce a new head. If left to its own devices, garlic will eventually form a small clump as its bulbs spread over the years.

Softneck garlic is easy to grow in mild climates. Choose the hard neck varieties for areas where winters are severe. Softneck usually produces smaller, more numerous cloves per head, and it stores particularly well. Storing garlic is all about keeping it relatively warm and dry. This encourages the cloves to stay dormant and prevents them from sprouting.

Garlic is one of the most universally accepted culinary ingredients, appreciated around the world for its pungent flavor and its incredible versatility in complementing meat, vegetables, bread, and eggs. It is grown commercially all over the world, notably in China, where over 12 million tons are produced each year.

How to Grow Garlic?

Difficulty: Easy. Garlic is not suited for growing in containers. This can be done, but it’s better in the ground, or possibly in raised beds.

Timing: Plant cloves from September to the end of November. There is a brief window at the beginning of March when you can plant for a fall harvest, but in this climate, garlic performs better if overwintered.

Sowing: Separate the cloves and set each one, pointed end up, 10-15cm (4-6”) apart and with the tip of the clove 2-5cm (1-2”) deep. Don’t skin the cloves! Use deeper planting if rain or frost may expose the cloves, and shallower planting if using mulch or planting into heavy soil. The largest cloves will make the largest bulbs.

Soil: Rich, well-drained soil. Dig well, add compost (lots of it if your soil is heavy), and do not compact it by stepping on it. Lime the soil several weeks before planting if the pH is lower than 6.0.

Growing: Fertilize when spring growth starts. Water as needed and keep weeding. Cut flower stalks to keep energy in the bulb. If individual cloves haven’t formed, either eat the clove or replant and it will bulb next year.

Harvest: When the tops begin to dry, pull and air-dry like onions. Some growers recommend waiting until 75% of the plant has dried up before pulling, and others say the key is to pull when each plant is down to 6 green leaves. 

Storage: Store in a room temperature, dry environment. Moisture, heat, or excessive cold may provoke sprouting.

Pests & Disease: Many growers have been hit with White Rot that causes black spots and decay on the bulbs. It is easily spread in infected soil and water and is very persistent in the soil. Flooding the bed for 4 weeks in the spring may kill it. The best way to avoid it is not to leave decaying alliums in the ground and by using a strict 4-year rotation.

Companion Planting: Planting garlic near roses will help to repel aphids. Because of its sulfur compounds, it may also help repel whiteflies, Japanese beetles, root maggots, carrot rust fly, and other pests. Garlic, made into a tea, or spray, will act as a systemic pesticide, drawing up into the cells of the plants. It’s a good companion for beets, Brassicas, celery, lettuce, potatoes, strawberries, and tomatoes. Avoid planting it near peas or beans of any kind.


We just love adding Garlic to our food all year long.  Enjoy planting and cooking.


Joanne xo

Planting Garlic in the Fall ~ Almanac

About Joanne Jensen

3 responses to “How to Plant Garlic Successfully in The Fall Season”

  1. […] of taste, appearance, and uses. In this article, we will explore the differences between chives and garlic chives, their nutritional value, and how to use them in various […]

  2. […] kola is native to India and Sri Lanka, but it can be found in other tropical regions as well. The plant grows best in moist, shaded areas. When caring for Gotu Kola, it is important to keep the soil moist […]

    1. Joanne Jensen Avatar

      Thank you for the comments on my blog. I really appreciate it.


Joanne Bettina Jensen

Joanne Jensen is a renowned gardener with over 45 years of experience in gardening. Her passion for gardening began when she was a child, assisting her Mom and Nana in tending to their backyard garden’s in England.

Now it has evolved into an amazing blog Since then, she has developed a deep appreciation for plants and has devoted her life to learning more about them. To read more go to her about page

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