Growing Garlic

Jan F M A M J J A S O N Dec
                P P    

(Best months for growing Garlic in USA - Zone 5a regions)

P = Plant cloves

September: Garlic can overwinter. Cover with a good layer of mulch . In areas where frost persists into March/ April, expect to harvest your garlic in June/July.

October: Garlic can overwinter. Cover with a good layer of mulch . In areas where frost persists into March/ April, expect to harvest your garlic in June/July.

  • 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 beside): Beets, Carrots, Cucumbers, Dill, Tomatoes, Parsnips
  • Avoid growing close to: Asparagus, Beans, Brassicas, Peas, Potatoes
  • Almost ready to harvest
  • Garlic cloves
  • Young garlic shoots

Garlic is traditionally planted in cold weather and harvested 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 but in 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, maybe just a single large bulb.

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 stir-fry.

Your comments and tips

05 Sep 21, Cynthia Hamilton (USA - Zone 6b climate)
I want to plant elephant garlic. I should plant it deeper, correct? This article said to just barely cover.
07 Sep 21, (USA - Zone 4a climate)
Plant as they suggest but keep an eye on the watering - don't let them dry out too much.
02 Sep 21, Molly Beverly (USA - Zone 7b climate)
We have grown up to 3 acres of garlic over the past 30 years. Plant in October/November, harvest the end of June. Around mid June the tops will start drying. Pull a bulb and count the wrappers. If there are 5 wrappers it is time to cut off the water. Harvest when the tops are mostly dried. I make braids from the largest bulbs right then. Hang them in the kitchen. Let the garlic cure 2 weeks in the shade before storing in a cool, dark place at room temperature. I grow soft neck garlic with big cloves and it keeps braided, hanging on my kitchen wall until the next harvest. And... always save the biggest bulbs with the biggest cloves for the next planting.
29 Aug 21, Jim Tocci (USA - Zone 7a climate)
My research seems to indicate that soft neck garlic might be more appropriate for my region vs hard neck. We plan to put them in mid-October to early November. Thanks!
17 Aug 21, william (USA - Zone 8a climate)
I am located in the Marshville, NC area. I have read varying articles about when to plant. I'm on the 7b/8a cusp. Some articles have said that I can plant as early as October or as last as January. More specific advice would be much appreciated.
01 Sep 21, Melinda Schwab (USA - Zone 8a climate)
We always prepare our garlic beds in late September and the first week of October plant our garlic and have had great luck with this. Best of luck with yours this year! Hope this helps. ~Melinda
29 Aug 21, (USA - Zone 7b climate)
It has a bit different times for 7b to 8a - you work out what is the best. Read and google about growing it.
02 Jul 21, Vicki (USA - Zone 7b climate)
What is the best garlic to grow in Virginia Zone 7b?
31 May 21, Mary Manion (USA - Zone 7a climate)
My first year growing German Red Garlic I bought from Burpee's and planted last early November, in 7A South Jersey, USA. Late frost, then huge temperature variations and a heat wave of 97 last week is doing us in! I have been careful to keep it watered. But suddenly after that lots of my spring greens bolted and my garlic- which did NOT flower- just started to fall over and turn yellow. I have left them in the ground as it was not supposed to harvest until mid July! Any chance it will spring back? Should I cut the stem off? Thanks for advice!
12 May 21, Anonymous (USA - Zone 7a climate)
I always grow my garlic from grocery store garlic, if I have no planting cloves of my own. I am in zone7...it alwAys germinated and proceeds to grow beautiful large garlic! I ordered some a good while back from a reputable gardening site, and it did NOT do well...almost no bulbs,
Showing 1 - 10 of 44 comments

I live in zone 9a. It is Feb. 17. I would like to know (since I already planted the garlic today) when I can (or can't) harvest. Will I be able to harvest this year, or will I have to wait until next year?Winter, Spring, Summer or Fall?

- Wynny

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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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