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Growing Garlic

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

(Best months for growing Garlic in New Zealand - cool/mountain regions)

P = Plant cloves

  • 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

17 Jan 20, pierre visagie (South Africa - Summer rainfall climate)
can i plant garlic in tunnels. what rime of year. watering intervals.
21 Jan 20, anon (South Africa - Summer rainfall climate)
Read the top of the page for planting times. Water today and tomorrow stick you finger into the soil 75 mm, if your finger is wet then you don't need to water. Small waterings to start with and then increase it as the plant grows.
17 Dec 19, Brian Gavaghan OAM (Australia - temperate climate)
With our diverse weather, what watering should we do?And Oblige Brian
18 Dec 19, Another gardener (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
It is a bit of trial and error. Have good draining soil. Little plants need little waterings more often, daily, big plants a lot more water less often, 2-3 times per week. General rule dig down into the soil 50-70mm to see how moist the soil is. You will quickly learn that say a crop of lettuce might need 60 sec of watering. Whereas some mature tomatoes plants need 2-3 minutes.
14 Nov 19, Graham Bower (Australia - temperate climate)
In Berwick Vic. Have grown garlic with great success for years but this year virtually all plants have segmented in the ground pre normal harvest time. Plants are still strong, green and upright although have grown slimmer leaves as they segment. I do not believe I have done anything differently this year. Any thoughts?.
18 Nov 19, (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Maybe the hotter weather.
02 Nov 19, Angela Schreiber (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Hello. Our purple garlic is out of the ground. We tie them in bunches with dead stems intact . We take the roots off them. Question: the shed they are suspended in has a moist atmosphere due to the rain today. It has a dirt floor and no doors.Will this moisture cause them to rot or make them susceptible to pests or mites. We have about 800. Thankyou
04 Nov 19, anon (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
My experience is with shallot bulbs. I just keep them loose in a pot tray/dish drying tray about 2-3 (??)
28 Oct 19, Coco (Australia - temperate climate)
I am western Australia perth . I would like to ask you about garlic . Can it be planted in early or mid December, would it still grow to its full potential if planted around that time.thank you very much.
29 Oct 19, anon (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
This is the way I see it. They recommend planting May to July for temperate - Perth. The reason is, this is when you will have the best results. Now if you go and plant it in Oct/Nov you will probably produce a smaller crop or no crop. You have to look at your local conditions also. It is like if a seed requires 20 degrees soil temp to germinate why plant it when it is 15 degrees.
Showing 1 - 10 of 642 comments

I live just out of Dunedin where we get frosts and occasional snow storms, our winters could be classed as severe. Garlic is similar to shallots in that it was regarded years ago to plant both shallots and garlic on the shortest day (June 21st.) and harvest on the longest day (December 21st) How-ever I now plant my garlic at intervals from early May through to mid August with great results. I always plant my clove straight into the ground with the top about half an inch below the surface. Space your cloves about six inches apart, the best of luck with your future plantings. Tony

- Tony Robinson

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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. GardenGrow 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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