How to Plant Garlic – Step by Step
Garlic is one of the easiest things to grow in a home vegetable garden. Learn all the tips you need to know on how to plant garlic in fall or spring.
Growing garlic is very low maintenance. Plant, ignore, and harvest? That is my favorite kind of crop!
Garlic is the best, and a few of our favorite ways to enjoy it are by making Air Fryer Roasted Garlic, Garlic Butter Green Beans, and Instant Pot Roasted Garlic. Gimme all the garlic! Garlic is one of my favorite seasonings, so much so that I have a whole garlic section of recipes that you can find here.
What Kind of Garlic Should I Grow?
There are essentially two types of garlic – hardneck and softneck. Hardneck “keeps” (stores) for a shorter amount of time, but is wicked easy to plant and gives you scapes in summer, which seems like bonus garlic to me.
Softneck stores better for longer periods of time, but can be a bit fussier. Confused about which to plant? Try both if you have enough space. And color me jealous if you do!
Where Do I Get Seed Garlic?
Farmer’s markets or online seed companies are great places to get great local seed garlic. Do try to find a variety adapted to your climate/zone.
Even better, when you save your best bulbs each year to plant, you are strengthening that variety and adapting it to grow in your region. No matter our weather, I have great results every year with our garlic because it is used to my growing conditions.
Do not use garlic from the grocery store as it is either bred to not allow for growth or has been sprayed to prevent growth. It makes inferior seed garlic.
When Is the Best Time to Plant Garlic?
Ideally, you’d get your seed garlic into the ground in fall, about four weeks before your first frost date. It gives the seed time to overwinter and establish bigger bulbs.
As this is such a long-growing crop, please keep in mind that where you plant the garlic will be out of commission for essentially the whole growing season.
Can You Plant Garlic in Spring?
How Deep Should You Plant Garlic?
Create little slots about two inches deep, and two inches apart from each other. I just use my pointer and middle finger.
Can You Plant Garlic From a Clove?
Yes! For best results, choose the biggest and best cloves to plant.
How To Plant Garlic – Step by Step
First, find out which growing zone you are located in. That will dictate your planting window.
Then, prepare your growing space. A few weeks before planting, break up the soil and add amendments (fertilizers) as needed. I use my pitchfork – aka the chicken crap scooper – to turn up the soil.
I add two wheelbarrows full of composted chicken manure, and two bags full of used coffee grounds and till it in with a pitchfork. Each garden will need different amendments based on your growing conditions.
Break apart the cloves, trying your best to keep them wrapped in their papery covers. You are going to leave the skin on the cloves when planting garlic. Hold the garlic so the pointy end is pointing towards the sky and the root end goes into the soil. Push down into the hole two inches deep.
When To and How to Harvest Garlic
How to Cure Garlic
MORE DIY GARDENING POSTS
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- Vertical Strawberry Planter
- DIY Garden Trellis
- Seed Tape – Homemade Seed Tape
- Thinning and Replanting Strawberry Plants
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We just discovered a bed of wild garlic in the lot we purchased over the winter. Surprise! Thanks for this info.
What an incredible find!!
I’ve always planted my past prime for eating/sprouting garlic cloves from the store for years with excellent results. Just stuck them in the ground.. Never tried from seed.
Glad it has worked for you!