Monday, October 4, 2010

Plant Garlic Now!

October is the perfect time to get your garlic planted.   I've had people complain that they've never had much luck with growing garlic only to find out they were planting in the spring.  Readjust your calendar when it comes to garlic.

The mild days of October give the garlic bulb time to send out leaves.  Once it gets cold, the plant slows down and not much happens above ground. As it begins to warm up again in spring, the leaves suddenly brighten and start growing again.  Its spring when the bulb forms.

Garlic is a pretty forgiving plant but prefers a loose soil.  I rarely fertilize except to add compost each year and every 4 to 5 years I might toss in a phosphate fertilizer.  I've found one of the keys to good sized bulbs is even watering throughout the winter.  Long stretches of dry soil won't necessarily kill the plant but it does result in very small bulbs.

Its an easy winter plant to grow and pays off dramatically come spring.  You can even eat the leaves and scapes (the flower stalks and heads).  What more could one want in a plant!

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