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Growing Garlic

(Allium sativum)

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
  P P P                

(Best months for planting Garlic in South Africa - Dry summer sub-tropical regions)

P = Plant direct in garden where they are to grow.


  • Easy to grow. Plant cloves. Best planted at soil temperatures between 10°C and 35°C. (Show °F/in)
  • Space plants: 10 - 12 cm apart
  • Harvest in 17-25 weeks.
  • Compatible with (can grow in same bed): Beets, Carrots, Cucumbers, Dill, Tomatoes, Parsnips
  • Avoid growing in same bed: Asparagus, Beans, Brassicas, Peas, Potatoes
  • Almost ready to harvest
  • Garlic cloves
  • Young garlic shoots

Garlic is traditionally planted in cold weather and harvest in summer ("plant on the shortest day, harvest on the longest"). Plant the cloves (separated from the bulb), point upwards, deep enough to just cover with soil. A fairly tough and easy-growing plant. On better soil with regular watering you will get a better crop. On poorer soil, and forgetting to water them, you will still get some garlic, only not quite so much.

Leave a garlic to go to seed, and you will probably get plenty of self-sown plants the following year.

To keep for later use, dig up and leave to dry out for a day or so after the green shoots die down. To use immediately, pull up a head when you need it, or cut and use the green shoots.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Garlic

Cut the growing shoots or use the entire young garlic plants as 'garlic greens' in stirfry.


Your comments and tips

07 Feb 15, Moses Opoo (Australia - tropical climate)
Hello, I live in Eastern Uganda with very harsh weather. What type of garlic can I plant here reflecting on the weather.
19 Dec 14, manie sequeira (South Africa - Summer rainfall climate)
my wife and i started a childrens home. is it possible to make money out of garlic on a peace of grownd 35m * 13m.
19 Jan 15, Vivian (South Africa - Semi-arid climate)
Hi, Yes you can. Try www.garlicgrowers.co.za Good luck. rds
08 Dec 14, Uraj (USA - Zone 13a climate)
Is there a garlic that will grow in the tropic, if so I will like to try it.Where can I obtain these garlic. I live in Guyana South America.
27 Nov 14, celia (South Africa - Dry summer sub-tropical climate)
Trying a garden for garlic at home in campbell northern cape. The one lot's leaves look if it hang down on the ground. Litereally flat on the soil and not upright. We have very hot summers and very cold winters in the northen cape. Could somebody send me some tips or why the garlic hang so flat
17 Nov 14, Koos Snyman (South Africa - Summer rainfall climate)
When to plant garlic . How to fireflies garlic . Spray garlic for pest.
14 Nov 14, Janet (Australia - temperate climate)
Am on NSW far south coast. Planted garlic around June and they are starting to brown off now. Any point in leaving them in longer ie waiting till the longest day? Also should I water them at all before harvest?
22 Oct 14, Gert olivier (South Africa - Summer rainfall climate)
We would like to plant garlic. Area is Bela Bela and we would like to find out where to purchase the seed pods. Our soil is clay, will this work and when should we plant Thanks
12 Oct 14, Hannelie Burger (South Africa - Summer rainfall climate)
I am staying in Sutherland Northern Cape with very harsh snowy winters and thunder rain in summer on top of the Komsberg mountain range. Is it possible to plant garlic now in October and harvest before winter because our growing window is only between October and March. Which cultivar is the best for this conditions.
27 Sep 14, Glen (Australia - temperate climate)
I live on NSW far south coast, moved there quite recently. I planted garlic as usual at mid-winter, and it was fine for a while, then started looking unwell with some dead leaves. Gave a bit of blood and bone about three weeks ago, and now the lot has died. Disappeared. I've just dug it up, and there were a few small bulbs starting to form. The soil came from a supplier and was a soil and mushroom compost mix. Never had a problem before - dows anyone have any ideas as to what's wrong.
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This planting guide is a general reference intended for home gardeners. We recommend that you take into account your local conditions in making planting decisions. Gardenate is not a farming or commercial advisory service. For specific advice, please contact your local plant suppliers, gardening groups, or agricultural department. The information on this site is presented in good faith, but we take no responsibility as to the accuracy of the information provided.

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