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Hey Neighbor! It's that time of year to start thinking about growing garlic. Garlic is one of the easiest crops to grow in the home garden. Some of the best things about growing it is that you can plant a large amount in a small space. Garlic also doesn't have many pests or disease issues and it LOVES the cold weather. It's a great vegetable to grow for beginners because it's so forgiving! If you've never tried growing garlic, we think this year should be your year! 

Growing Garlic

Garlic is one of the easiest crops to grow in the home garden. You can plant a large amount in a small space, it doesn't have many pests or disease, and it loves cold weather. You can plant it and pretty much forget about it until you harvest it nine months later. It's the perfect vegetable to grow as a beginner because it is so forgiving. 

Garlic is a Superfood! 

Today considered a super food, stimulating immune system and helping to fight disease. 

  • Reduces Blood Pressure
  • Lowers Cholesterol
  • Contains Antioxidants
  • Boost immune system

The Two Types of Garlic

Softneck Garlic

Softneck garlic grows in a variety of climates and does not require cold temperatures to produce a bulb, making it perfect for regions with mild winters although it also grows well in areas with cold winters. They usually have smaller cloves than hardneck varieties, store longer (up to 1 year), and are ideal for braiding. Mild flavor, usually have more cloves, but smaller. Ideal for milder winters and less chill hours. Most common found in Grocery stores.

The garlic that most of us cook with is soft neck, so called because its neck is soft and braidable. Softneck garlic contains a circle of plump cloves shrouding a second circle of smaller cloves, all enveloped by many papery layers. Longer storage life, due to more layers of paper. Can store for up to a year. Drainage can be the biggest issue with soft neck and needs well drained soil.

Hardneck Garlic

Hardneck garlic has stronger, more complex flavors and produces a tall, edible flower stalk, called a "scape", in spring. Hardneck garlic varieties generally can be stored for 4 to 6 months. Many require a cold period (vernalization) to create a bulb, which is easy in areas with cold winters, but growing it in the south or mild, coastal areas will require a pre-chilling treatment. Simply place the bulbs in a dark location at 40°F with a relative humidity of 80% for 40 to 45 days before planting.

Forms cloves around center of stalk, has a center core. Easier to peel, Ideal for Northern climates and cold, harsher winters. Does not braid well due to hard stalk. To us, it is more flavorful! Because the outer paper on the bulb is thinner, they won’t store as long as soft neck garlic. Creates a scape that is great for stir fry, pesto.  You need to cut this off when appears so energy will go to the bulb and not to flower.


 Where To Plant Your Garlic?

 A sunny spot, rich soil amended with compost and well balanced compete organic fertilizer. Does not like acidic soil. 

It is a good idea to practice rotation when planting garlic. Don't plant garlic where onions or a member of the onion family has been grown previously. Plant garlic in full sun and in a well-drained bed with organic matter worked into it. Garlic likes well-drained soil, and the addition of organic matter will help even the hardest clay become more friable. Also, since garlic requires up to 8 months to mature, plant in an area where it won't be disturbed.

Break apart cloves from the bulb a few days before planting, but keep the papery husk on each individual clove. Plant cloves 4 to 8 inches apart and 2 inches deep in their upright position (with the wider root side facing down and pointed end facing up). Plant in rows spaced 6 to 12 inches apart.

Garlic Growing Guide


Want to know how to grow Elephant Garlic? Click here to visit Hoss University!


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