Planting Fall Garlic in Prepared Gardening Beds Knowledge is exactly what beginner gardeners need and even experienced homesteading gardeners can to brush upon.
Plant cloves in mid-autumn in a sunny location with rich, well-drained soil. Set cloves root side down 4-6″ apart in rows 1-1/2 to 2′ apart, and cover with 1-2″ of fine soil. In the North, put down 6″ of mulch for winter protection. Garlic may begin growth late in fall or early in spring.
Garlic is usually planted in the fall because they sprout larger bulbs. This gives time through the winter to establish their roots and have the seeds split up, something called vernalization. In the spring, the garlic will grow and form their large heads for the harvest. With the winter period for 4-8 weeks, the garlic won’t divide into cloves and sprout as big. But it doesn’t mean garlic can only be planted in the fall. There are reasons to plant in the spring. The flavor is more mellow, the green shoots have the garlic taste in them, and the flower stalk it grows is tender and delicious to eat.
Prepare the garden bed and pick a spot that gets 6-8 hours of sunlight every day. Let the soil thaw and drain out to see if it holds together so you can fertilize. Plot out planting holes; the bulbs are going to be small so they can be planted closer together. Make the holes 2-4 inches apart and 2-inches deep. Remove the cloves from the bulb and put them in the holes with the root side down and the pointed end up. Then, cover the bed with a 2-3 inch layer of organic mulch. This will keep out the weeds.
Garlic can be harvested once it develops the green shoots. They are edible, so you can mix them with salads, tacos, and as a pizza topping. Green garlic bulbs will not live long in storage, so freeze the extras for later. The longer the garlic is in the ground, the more mature the bulb will be. The garlic is finished when the outer leaves die out.
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