Garlic Harvest

Harvesting Garlic

Harvesting Garlic

We harvested our 100 garlic plants yesterday.  The bulbs were almost all quite large and firm.  We didn’t wait for the stalks (on the soft necks) to fall over, the traditional sign that it’s time to harvest.  We were expecting some extended rains and we didn’t want to harvest wet bulbs, nor did we want the outer skin layers to start splitting.  The time was right.

Lettuce and Garlic

Lettuce and Garlic

We planted two rows of hard necks and one row of soft necks.  I started out using the broad fork to lift out several bulbs at a time, but I quickly switched to using a small fork and a CobraHead Weeder to pull out each bulb individually.  That was because I still have a lot of young lettuce plants that I had planted between the rows and I want to keep them going until I clean up the bed and do a late summer planting of beets and carrots.

Drying Garlic

Drying Garlic

We’ll dry the garlic for about two weeks on tables in the garage, but if it gets too hot we’ll bring them into the house to finish drying slowly.  High heat can overdry the garlic and practically cause them to disintegrate.

When the leaves turn brown we’ll cut them off leaving a 2″ stalk and store in the basement in mesh hanging baskets for good air circulation.

Garlic Bulbs

Garlic Bulbs

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7 Responses to “Garlic Harvest”

  1. HI JUDY & JOEL

    WHAT A HEALTHY WEBSITE! I WANT TO PLANT SOME GARLIC NEXT YEAR…
    WE’VE EATEN IT FOR YEARS! I HAVE 12 WEBSITES NOW & CONTINUE
    TO WRITE EACH DAY…FOR 8 YEARS. MOTHER ALWAYS TOOK PICTURES
    & WROTE IN HER DIARIES…IT MUST BE…’INHERITED!’ KEEP PLANTING &
    I’LL KEEP WRITING! YOUR COUSIN…CAROLE

    FUSEDTENNIS@YAHOO.COM

  2. Kathy Swendner says:

    Hi Judy and Joel! I have tried to grow garlic for a few years now and it always comes out quite puny. Perhaps the type I am growing? What is the secret to growing those wonderful big one? What type do you plant?

  3. Noel says:

    Hi Kathy, variety is not too important. Just start with good cloves from big bulbs. In the north, you have to plant in the late fall and cover the bulbs with a good insulating mulch, straw is best, to overwinter and give the garlic a good head start into spring. During the season, don’t let the garlic get too wet. It prefers drier as opposed to wetter. Once you get a good harvest, save some bulbs for planting next season. Garlic gets acclimatized and seed you save often grows better than seed from outside sources.

  4. Pat Scales says:

    How to grow garlic from the seed head which develops atop the foliage?
    How long til germination? When to plant? indoors in pots first, or right out in the garden? Thanks.

  5. Pat Scales says:

    What is meant by moderation?

  6. Noel says:

    Moderation means that the owner of a blog gets to look at a comment before approving it for posting. It helps control spammers and people saying things on your blog that you don’t necessarily want to share with the public.

  7. Noel says:

    The little seeds that form on garlic scapes are not true seeds. They are called bulbils. You can grow good garlic from them, but it’s a three year process to get back to full size bulbs. It’s much easier to plant cloves from full sizes bulbs. There are good reasons you may want to plant bulbils, but most garlic growers don’t. I suggest you search “planting garlic bulbils” as the process is rather detailed to explain briefly.