While most of the garden has been laid out on the bed, the garlic is just getting started. Planting garlic in the fall may seem a little backward, but it is the best way to ensure a good harvest the following year and the other years follow suit.

We even use it to control pests naturally outdoors. Homemade chilli spray is our favorite spray when we need to protect plants from pests devouring them.

So what does it take to grow a good crop of garlic?

In fact, this just might be the best party ever. Garlic is one of the easiest crops to grow and grow in the garden. It naturally repels most pests and requires little maintenance.

Garlic is a major ingredient in homemade pasta sauce.

Here’s a look at how to grow your crop this fall, including a short instructional video at the end.

Most garden vegetables are tender annuals that are grown in the spring after the last frost threat. Garlic is perennial garlic and planting garlic in the fall allows the bulbs to prove themselves so they are ready to grow once the snow melts in the spring.



Planting garlic in the fall gives the crop a head start in development, so when spring comes it will grow faster and more elastic.

The fall planting allows the garlic to start growing roots early without giving it a chance to sprout the leaves.

The planting time in the fall depends entirely on your climate and growing region.

It’s common to plant garlic between mid-September and mid-October, but these dates can change if you are growing during very short or very long growing seasons.


The best time to plant garlic in the fall depends on your location. You should sow garlic 4-6 weeks before the soil begins to freeze for the winter.

In Vermont (Region 4), this is older than most places in the United States because winter comes early. I plant garlic in mid-October because the ground usually freezes over at Thanksgiving.

In very northern places like Canada and Zone 3 regions of the United States, plant garlic in early October. In regions to the south, garlic is planted until mid-November.

I’d like to give you a specific date, but it’s not that simple. Despite this, there are a lot of grey areas in garlic plantations.

In some years, I planted garlic as early as the end of September to deal with an upcoming busy fall, and in other years I didn’t plant it until November.

Every year, the harvest arrives without fail. Garlic is less tough than you might think.


More important than growing garlic is choosing the best garlic seeds. Look for light bulbs that have a completely sealed and undamaged paper package. Cloves that split or not hold do not store well, and if you plant them, the garlic you harvested will share these characteristics.

Ideally, find the largest cloves possible for planting. Transplanting large cloves means that your garlic plants have the extra energy to produce very large bulbs the following year.

This also means that the garlic you harvest will have large cloves, making it easier to peel in the long run.


In addition to choosing the large cloves for planting, the type of garlic selected will affect the flavor and how the plants grow.

There are over 200 commonly grown varieties of garlic, and each one has been selected to grow in a specific region.

Try to find quality garlic seeds locally if you can and keep your bulbs for once you have a successful strain.


Like most vegetables, garlic grows best in fertile, loose soil. Before planting, work out large amounts of compost to help amend the soil.

how to prepare the soil
how to prepare the soil

Compost is the key to a good garlic harvest. It helps loosen the soil and add valuable nutrients.

Compost is the ideal partner for growing garlic. Not only will this help revitalize the soil with nutrients, but it will also help loosen the dirt to allow the bulb to grow properly.


Once you have the garlic seeds on hand, you will need to peel the bulbs to separate the garlic cloves. It is important to simply peel the outer shell from the paper and leave the inner garlic peel intact. This helps protect the garlic cloves from the seeds from damage during planting.

Gently begin to peel off the outer skin of the top of the onion, removing as many layers as needed to reveal the cloves. Once you get a little training, it only takes a few seconds.


Under ideal conditions, garlic prefers rich, well-drained soil that is largely free of rocks and stones. Plant a bed to remove roots, sticks, and stones that can discolour growing garlic. Add sifted compost to create a rich, well-planted bed of weeds.

However, in addition to a dedicated garlic bed, I also plant garlic throughout the yard to deter pests.

A few bulbs pass under the young apple trees in the orchard, and others sprout with perennials and herbs in my flower gardens. All of them produce delicious garlic, although the bulbs grown in less than ideal conditions tend to be slightly smaller.


The requirements for spacing garlic are somewhat subjective. Some sources say to plant the bulbs as close as 4 inches apart in rows spaced 8 inches apart. Others suggest 6-8 inches tall in rows of at least 1 foot.

Distant planting means there is more room for individual bulbs to grow and access to more nutrients, but it also means there is more room for weeds.

In dry areas, farther farmland reduces the need for irrigation. Water is rarely a problem here in Vermont and we make a lot of compost. In rich soils where water is not a problem, 4 inches apart in rows and 8 inches apart increases the garlic harvest.


Although garlic is generally not tough, planting direction is important. Garlic grown above will deform and dwarf if grown at all. The most important thing in planting garlic is to ensure that the planted root is side down and the rod facing up.

Sweet garlic varieties don’t pay much attention to the direction of planting, which means they can be grown mechanically. This is why you will usually find that soft garlic pays the groceries. It’s a shame, as the tough garlic varieties are the best garlic varieties. Softneck garlic is soft, with very little flavour in comparison.


Plant individual cloves 4 to 8 inches apart, in rows of 8 to 12 inches. Leave more space in dry, poor soil. Most importantly, make sure they are going in the right direction. See where the small roots are on the garlic bulb and let it guide you.

Cover each lob with 1-2 inches of soil, preferably deeper in cooler climates. Next, cover the entire bed with ample sheets of straw or dry leaves. Garlic cloves will form and begin to bloom before winter, then grow again very early in spring.


Garlic planted in the fall will grow again once the snow melts in the spring and begins to grow vigorously. Make sure to keep the hay bed clear of weeds.

Our farmer’s ducks have been a great help with garlic because they love insects and weeds, but they don’t eat real garlic. Unfortunately, they eat almost everything so they’re really just garden aids around their garlic bed.


In early June, the fall-planted garlic will begin producing garlic pieces. The garlic stalk is a flower stalk curled from the hard collar of the garlic plant, and it’s not really a problem with soft collar types.

Many gardeners hate the chores of clearing landscaping, while others regard it as an extra early harvest. It’s all about perspective.

We harvest garlic pesto and pickled garlic blossoms, which have a great taste from dill grains. If you leave them on, they will develop into tiny garlic balls, which are true garlic seeds.

You can grow bulbs and grow garlic from seed, but letting the plants go to seed means they won’t put all their energy into growing large bulbs.

A good garlic harvest means removing the stems, but don’t worry if you miss one or two. This is not the end of the world, the lamp is still forming under the ground, it will be a little smaller.


We put a light 1 ”layer of straw on our harvest right after planting. This protects the soil from weed seeds blowing out but still allows the garlic to grow.

We place a light 1-inch straw covering on our dirt. It helps keep moisture in and prevent weeds.

Once the farm has sprouted, we then add a few centimetres of extra straw mulch to help protect the crop during the winter. You can also use shredded leaves.

Keep the crop watered if conditions are very dry.

The only added secret here is to keep weeds at bay. Weeds compete for nutrients, and a lawn will maintain fewer and fewer yields.


With the advent of spring, your garlic crop will fall out of hibernation and continue to grow.

We usually add a little mulch to suppress weeds in early spring. Other than that, the only maintenance required before harvesting is keeping weeds away.

Cover for weed control and winter protection

We place a light 1 1 layer of straw on our crop immediately after planting. This prevents the soil from blowing out the weed seeds but still allows the garlic to thrive.

We put a light mulch of straw on our soil. Helps lock in moisture indoors and ward off weeds.

Once the crop has sprouted, we add a few inches of extra straw mulch to help protect the crop during the winter. You can also use shredded papers.

Keep the crop watered if conditions are very dry.

The only added secret here is to keep weeds at bay. Weeds compete for nutrients, and a lawn will maintain fewer and fewer yields.


Garlic is harvested in July in most places, once the leaves begin to turn brown and die. Gently lift each bulb and remove as much dirt as possible. Don’t wash them and be careful not to damage the bulbs.

Leave the roots and leaves intact, all the energy from the plant matter will go to the bulb as it hardens.

Hang or spread the garlic out on a table out of direct sunlight and out of the rain. Ideally, it will be in a well-ventilated area with winds of 75 to 80 degrees.

Garlic takes about two weeks to cure, but it may take longer under poor drying conditions. Once the outer skin is dry and the top is fine and brown, cut the bulbs and store the garlic in a cool, dry place like a store.

At this point, the whole process starts over again. Sort your garlic crop and look for bigger, healthier bulbs. Store them on the side as garlic seeds for fall. These cloves will be stored until planting 4-6 weeks before the soil freezes.

If you choose the best garlic cloves year after year, you will develop your own strain of garlic, optimally picked for your local growing conditions.


Can you grow garlic from the grocery store?

This question is complicated.

Yes, you can grow garlic that you buy at the grocery store, but they will likely pay not for you as well as garlic cloves purchased from a trusted gardening source.

Grocery stores are often sprinkled with garlic with a growth inhibitor that won’t sprout, or at least it takes longer to germinate. This is clearly not what you want if you try to grow garlic.

Moreover, it may be grocery store garlic in a very different growing zone in your area and it probably won’t grow well in your climate anywhere else.

However, you can of course try growing garlic at the grocery store. We did in question and pushed, but did produce very small bulbs.

Where do you buy garlic cloves for planting?

Garlic cloves can be purchased for cultivation from most farm stores, garlic farms, and seed catalogues. Be sure to shop early, especially since seed catalogues tend to sell without garlic in the fall!

Most online catalogues allow pre-ordering garlic from August or early September. By registering for this list, you will make sure that garlic is in cultivation.

Amazon – which acts as an intermediary for a number of professional garden suppliers – also offers several varieties of garlic bulbs for sale, which are ideal for consumption and cultivation. You can see the range here

Can you plant garlic in the spring

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