Fun, I have garlic! (Oh crap, now what?)

User avatar
brownrexx
Reactions: 693
Posts: 866
Joined: Thu Dec 12, 2019 1:05 pm
Location: Southeast PA, zone 6b
Contact:

Re: Fun, I have garlic! (Oh crap, now what?)

#21

Post: # 31788Unread post brownrexx
Sun Oct 04, 2020 7:20 am

If you live in an area where the soil will freeze and thaw repeatedly it can heave (push) the bulbs up through the soil and sometimes they can even be found laying on top of the ground in the Spring. This can happen to fall planted flower bulbs too.

For this reason I put a thick mulch over my newly planted garlic bulbs. It will keep the sun from warming that top layer of soil after it has frozen. In the Spring my sprouts pop right through this mulch. Last year I used pine needles and they worked quite well.

User avatar
KathyDC
Reactions: 173
Posts: 165
Joined: Wed Jun 03, 2020 1:33 pm
Location: Suburban Washington, DC (zone 7A)
Contact:

Re: Fun, I have garlic! (Oh crap, now what?)

#22

Post: # 31804Unread post KathyDC
Sun Oct 04, 2020 2:04 pm

My goodness, that is a work of art, Sari!
1

User avatar
ponyexpress
Reactions: 71
Posts: 193
Joined: Wed Jun 03, 2020 4:47 am
Location: Mass, 6b
Contact:

Re: Fun, I have garlic! (Oh crap, now what?)

#23

Post: # 31815Unread post ponyexpress
Sun Oct 04, 2020 5:39 pm

svalli wrote:
Sun Oct 04, 2020 7:05 am
planted 1140 cloves and mulched the beds with leaves yesterday.
1140 is a lot! Are these full sized cloves?

I plant around 300. I space mine 6" apart in a row with each row 1 foot apart.
0

User avatar
svalli
Reactions: 110
Posts: 50
Joined: Thu Jan 09, 2020 6:08 am
Location: Vaasa, Finland
Contact:

Re: Fun, I have garlic! (Oh crap, now what?)

#24

Post: # 31848Unread post svalli
Mon Oct 05, 2020 4:33 am

ponyexpress wrote:
Sun Oct 04, 2020 5:39 pm

1140 is a lot! Are these full sized cloves?

I plant around 300. I space mine 6" apart in a row with each row 1 foot apart.
I have 34 hardneck varieties planted, most were large cloves and just few rounds grown from bulbils. This year I planted 170 cloves less than year ago. I dropped couple of varieties, which do not grow well.

I have four rows in a bed 8" apart with 6" between cloves in each row.
0
"I only want to live in peace, plant potatoes and dream."
- Moomin-troll by Tove Jansson

LK2020
Reactions: 26
Posts: 48
Joined: Thu Mar 05, 2020 11:45 am
Location: Zone 6b (ish)
Contact:

Re: Fun, I have garlic! (Oh crap, now what?)

#25

Post: # 32018Unread post LK2020
Wed Oct 07, 2020 3:40 pm

I grew Music and Chesnok Red a couple years ago, and loved the scapes and the garlic, but my garlic was TINY. I planted it in early December in Zone 6, and had amended the bed with compost, worm castings, and added a balanced granulated organic fertilizer. Covered with leaves for mulch. Seemed to grow well. Last year I ordered some beautiful garlic but never got it into the ground, sadly. It dried up, and I probably should make some garlic powder out of it. This year, I've ordered Music, Chesnok Red, German Extra Hardy, Georgian Crystal, and Persia Star, and I can't wait to plant them.

My question is, what can I do to get bigger garlic? I was thinking about throwing in some lime and bone meal when I plant it, along with the compost and granulated fertilizer. It looks like my seed garlic (the 1st three varieties have arrived already) has bigger cloves than the first time I grew it, so hoping that helps too. Any ideas?
0

User avatar
Bower
Reactions: 1002
Posts: 1511
Joined: Thu Dec 12, 2019 12:44 pm
Location: Newfoundland, Canada
Contact:

Re: Fun, I have garlic! (Oh crap, now what?)

#26

Post: # 32041Unread post Bower
Thu Oct 08, 2020 6:18 am

@LK2020 you may get a better reply from the pro's here, but these are the factors that affect bulb size afaik.
Besides the soil fertility, spacing/depth, and keeping them weeded so they don't suffer from the competition for nutes and water, garlic needs full sun. I've definitely seen a reduction in bulb size in beds that got shade for just a part of the day. Water is another thing, depending on your climate. We rarely water the garlic here but they may need occasional watering in drought conditions, or that could affect your size. (too much water is also bad as it promotes garlic diseases).
You can tweak the amount of care needed on a bigger plot of land, by spacing more generously, or by using a moisture retaining mulch, etc. For a small garden that gets lots of attention, you can space rows closer in a deep rich soil and lavish them with regular weeding, occasional water if it's dry, liquid ferts or a side dressing in the spring, etc. That is my thought from reading and seeing different methods in different places.
Aside from planting and care considerations, the last thing for bulb size is, not harvesting too early. Timing the harvest is a tradeoff between losing some bulbs which start to shed their last wrappers, and having tight bulbs that are smaller than the 'max' potential. In most years my garlic seems to be close to full size at about 3 weeks from the scape harvest. Chesnok Red and Persian Star scape later, and they have a tendency to be smaller bulbs anyway, but Henry told me that these purple stripe varieties can size up a lot in the last week of growth. So although they're later, don't harvest them too early.
1
AgCan Zone 5a/USDA zone 4
temperate marine climate
yearly precip 61 inches/1550 mm

User avatar
ponyexpress
Reactions: 71
Posts: 193
Joined: Wed Jun 03, 2020 4:47 am
Location: Mass, 6b
Contact:

Re: Fun, I have garlic! (Oh crap, now what?)

#27

Post: # 32043Unread post ponyexpress
Thu Oct 08, 2020 8:08 am

@LK2020 I agree with what @Bower said. I would add sufficient spacing (I space mine 6" apart in a row with rows 1ft apart), good layer of mulch (5") that I leave on. The garlic will have no trouble going through the mulch unless it's a soft neck. I harvest my bulbs when I see 4 mostly good leaves remaining. Each variety is different. Some are early (Blossom) and others are late Music, German Extra Hardy.
1

Paquebot
Reactions: 51
Posts: 159
Joined: Wed Dec 11, 2019 1:24 pm
Location: Wisconsin
Contact:

Re: Fun, I have garlic! (Oh crap, now what?)

#28

Post: # 32059Unread post Paquebot
Thu Oct 08, 2020 1:38 pm

Without making things too complicated, the way to get biggest bulbs is giving the plants space and food. If there were just one plant, spread of roots would be a foot in all directions and nearly 3 feet deep. Planting in less than 8" spacing is not giving them enough root space. Everything was 8" spacing at We Grow Garlic and double staggered rows. My present bed is 8" spacing and rows a foot apart.

Garlic is a heavy feeder, especially nitrogen. I use a lot of horse manure plus Milorganite. This year it figured out to about a half-gallon per square foot. Milorganite applied thick enough to be seen as a thin layer.

Mulching is a shredded mix of oak leaves and white pine needles. Depth is roughly 3". If I can get more pine needles, another couple inches may be added. Advantage of both is that they are slow to break down and thus deter weeds right up to harvesting.

Martini

LK2020
Reactions: 26
Posts: 48
Joined: Thu Mar 05, 2020 11:45 am
Location: Zone 6b (ish)
Contact:

Re: Fun, I have garlic! (Oh crap, now what?)

#29

Post: # 32129Unread post LK2020
Fri Oct 09, 2020 3:40 pm

Thank you, @Bower @ponyexpress and @Paquebot I will try spacing them more - I think I was about 4-5" last time, rows probably same spacing. I just have a little backyard garden and some containers. The soil is well dug down to about 1 foot, but it is clayey and rocky below that so I don't think it would be easy to get roots down 3 feet, @Paquebot but who knows. There is partial shade in the morning b/c of a huge tree just outside my fence and off my property, so I can't do much about that. If I grow some of it in containers I can definitely put them in a sunnier part of the yard. I have some containers that are maybe 18" deep that I could use. I wish I had some horse manure, have never tried Milorganite so maybe that would be helpful. @Paquebot do you add the manure and Milorganite when you plant the bulbs, or in the spring? I used oak leaves for mulch, and that seemed to work pretty well. I think they need more space, sun, and nutrition, would be my guess. Thank you all for the tips!
0

Paquebot
Reactions: 51
Posts: 159
Joined: Wed Dec 11, 2019 1:24 pm
Location: Wisconsin
Contact:

Re: Fun, I have garlic! (Oh crap, now what?)

#30

Post: # 32143Unread post Paquebot
Fri Oct 09, 2020 7:11 pm

The horse manure and Milorganite were tilled in a day or two before planting. Normally would have planted immediately but a shower delayed it.

If the soil is worked a foot deep, that is perfect. Garlic goes looking for food almost that deep. There is no worry about what the soil is below that. The tap roots are powerful enough to penetrate very heavy soil.

Martin

LK2020
Reactions: 26
Posts: 48
Joined: Thu Mar 05, 2020 11:45 am
Location: Zone 6b (ish)
Contact:

Re: Fun, I have garlic! (Oh crap, now what?)

#31

Post: # 32162Unread post LK2020
Sat Oct 10, 2020 9:12 am

Paquebot wrote:
Fri Oct 09, 2020 7:11 pm
The horse manure and Milorganite were tilled in a day or two before planting. Normally would have planted immediately but a shower delayed it.

If the soil is worked a foot deep, that is perfect. Garlic goes looking for food almost that deep. There is no worry about what the soil is below that. The tap roots are powerful enough to penetrate very heavy soil.

Martin
Thank you! I'm going to do my best. I also planted late that year (December 2018) and I ordered late and got relatively small bulbs/cloves. This year I'm going to get them in within the next week or two. Also, I ordered earlier and the bulbs I just received contain much bigger cloves, and the ones I'm still waiting for are supposed to be Jumbo. Starting with bigger cloves should help too. Now, if the squirrels just won't dig them up ... they're going after everything this year.

Linda

Paquebot
Reactions: 51
Posts: 159
Joined: Wed Dec 11, 2019 1:24 pm
Location: Wisconsin
Contact:

Re: Fun, I have garlic! (Oh crap, now what?)

#32

Post: # 32185Unread post Paquebot
Sat Oct 10, 2020 6:30 pm

My fertilizing system with manure and Milorganite is an organic way. If you have no choice but non-organic you can use 20-10-10 which is the best for grasses. Works equally well for garlic and onions. Should be readily available in such places as Ace or Home Depot.

Martin

User avatar
Bower
Reactions: 1002
Posts: 1511
Joined: Thu Dec 12, 2019 12:44 pm
Location: Newfoundland, Canada
Contact:

Re: Fun, I have garlic! (Oh crap, now what?)

#33

Post: # 32197Unread post Bower
Sun Oct 11, 2020 7:46 am

Re: squirrels. I've been using chicken wire on my beds after planting. On one hand it keeps the leaf mulch from blowing away. On the other hand it stops the squirrel or voles from unearthing my newly planted cloves. And last not least, if a moose ignores all signs to walk elsewhere, the wire will limit the damage caused by their heavy hoofs. Since all three issues are chronically present, I'm stuck with the chicken wire method for the foreseeable future.
AgCan Zone 5a/USDA zone 4
temperate marine climate
yearly precip 61 inches/1550 mm

LK2020
Reactions: 26
Posts: 48
Joined: Thu Mar 05, 2020 11:45 am
Location: Zone 6b (ish)
Contact:

Re: Fun, I have garlic! (Oh crap, now what?)

#34

Post: # 32338Unread post LK2020
Wed Oct 14, 2020 9:14 am

Paquebot wrote:
Sat Oct 10, 2020 6:30 pm
My fertilizing system with manure and Milorganite is an organic way. If you have no choice but non-organic you can use 20-10-10 which is the best for grasses. Works equally well for garlic and onions. Should be readily available in such places as Ace or Home Depot.

Martin
Thanks! I might try that. I have some good compost and quite a collection of fertilizers, including fish emulsion (Nature's Harvest, and the home depot one that is more N-rich), garden tone, tomato tone, fertrell, trifecta, texas tomato food and their vegetable food, worm tea, and then I've been using Masterblend too (not organic) on almost everything, but that's probably too high in P-K for onions/garlic? When I grew onions for the first time this year, I side-dressed with ammonium sulfate, and could try that with garlic. I would just really love to try some rabbit manure or horse manure b/c people rave about it and I think it would improve my garden soil all around ... although my husky would probably love it too, and that would be a different problem.

LK2020
Reactions: 26
Posts: 48
Joined: Thu Mar 05, 2020 11:45 am
Location: Zone 6b (ish)
Contact:

Re: Fun, I have garlic! (Oh crap, now what?)

#35

Post: # 32339Unread post LK2020
Wed Oct 14, 2020 9:19 am

Bower wrote:
Sun Oct 11, 2020 7:46 am
Re: squirrels. I've been using chicken wire on my beds after planting. On one hand it keeps the leaf mulch from blowing away. On the other hand it stops the squirrel or voles from unearthing my newly planted cloves. And last not least, if a moose ignores all signs to walk elsewhere, the wire will limit the damage caused by their heavy hoofs. Since all three issues are chronically present, I'm stuck with the chicken wire method for the foreseeable future.
Wow, moose ... I had not thought about that before. Wow. Those hoofs could really wipe things out! Chicken wire is a possibility. I had been thinking about some row covers, just in the beginning. I have never seen the squirrels so hungry and aggressive as this year.
0

User avatar
brownrexx
Reactions: 693
Posts: 866
Joined: Thu Dec 12, 2019 1:05 pm
Location: Southeast PA, zone 6b
Contact:

Re: Fun, I have garlic! (Oh crap, now what?)

#36

Post: # 32347Unread post brownrexx
Wed Oct 14, 2020 10:49 am

I see squirrels but I have never had them dig up my garlic bulbs. The deer do not eat them either.
0

User avatar
Bower
Reactions: 1002
Posts: 1511
Joined: Thu Dec 12, 2019 12:44 pm
Location: Newfoundland, Canada
Contact:

Re: Fun, I have garlic! (Oh crap, now what?)

#37

Post: # 32379Unread post Bower
Wed Oct 14, 2020 7:57 pm

Somebody dug up a couple of cloves last year, before I got the mulch on. Didn't eat them but popped out of the ground to take a look..
There's a bit of a frenzy here to eat and gather stuff this time of year, as days are rapidly shrinking and frosts coming on.
The chance of losing a few of the last vegetables is higher now than in summer.
Usual suspects...?
Here's one yesterday.
squirrel-071.JPG
squirrel-071.JPG (185.93 KiB) Viewed 85 times
AgCan Zone 5a/USDA zone 4
temperate marine climate
yearly precip 61 inches/1550 mm

Post Reply

Return to “Garlic”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest