Planting Garlic

I read somewhere that Garlic benefits from being in the ground when it's cold - is it too late to put some in now? I have some that is just beginning to sprout, and would like to plant it?

Any suggestions?

That’s fab Tanya - thanks - don’t forget to upload pics here too if poss - just click on the image tab in the bar when posting (second one from left) - thanks! Cx

Hello and welcome to our group. I do know that the bigger the clove you plant, the bigger the bulb should be! I will look up your Facebook page. I hope you enjoy our group - take a look at the Good Life group too! Jacqui.

Hi Barbara and welcome to our garden lovers group. Sorry to hear about the mice - we have them in our potager too, but thankfully they don’t seem to be too much of a nuisance (although they do eat my strawberries!). I do know of French neighbours who plant garlic in Nov, but I have never got mine in that early, so you are not alone! Happy planting!

I try (but often fail) to plant garlic in November. After that it seems to do well if you get it in sometime early in the year. I’m digging now and will plant mine as soon as possible. My main problem is that little mice live underground and eat the garlic bulbs (and tulips and daffs) from the bottom upwards, leaving only stalk and leaf for me!

Thanks Peter I will have a look at that - I don’t know anything about the no dig approach - always shied away from it as without digging my weeds up that is all that would grow. As we have a large number of fruit trees the chippings are not a problem!

Jacqueline, one way to avoid the manuring/rotting is to adopt the No Dig approach proposed by Charles Dowding. Plant the bulbs/seed in the soil, then put some manure on top and then cover with a mulch, such as BRF (Live branches that you chip and apply straight away). The worms then pull the manure underground, and process it into a lovely rich soil. The mulch also slowly roots also but doesn't pull nitrogen from the soil but from the top of the manure. Its also helps retain moisture which is very important here in the sunny Languedoc.

Here's a link to Charles Book- I highly recommend it, but I have to say don't be fooled by the title, you still have to make the beds in the first place, and keeping the beds in shape makes up for the lack of digging.

Jilly, just checked with my Carol Klein book (Grow your own veg) and she advises not to plant onions in freshly manured ground as it can lead to rotting, although soil rich in organic matter is important.

I'd plant kitchen sprouting garlic and I've saved seeds from butternut squash that I've bought in the supermarket and sown them, BUT the experts would advise against it as it can produce an inferior crop and be much more susceptible to diseases. Garlic needs free draining soil that is not particularly rich. Keep your manure for the bumper crop of courgettes you ARE going to get this year :)


My motto is "If it sprouts plant it out", worst it can do is die, I do it with potatoes into old parafin containers which I water with grey water from the sink- we only use organic washing products to keep the cess pit alive (Horrible thought)- and I was pulling fresh potatoes on Christmas day.

After 11 years I am still trying to work out the micro-climate at our place, things happen well out of 'season' so I keep an open mind- and yes I have peas and beans sprouting in doors ready for a rapid planting the minute March arrives.

What I find is that I try and concentrate my veg growing into two seasons, spring and autumn and leave summer for the toms, salads, cucumbers and peppers.

Yes I've been thinking of planting the garlic which is sprouting in my kitchen as well, didn't realise you could plant it out now though, will give that a go. Does anyone know if there is a difference to the garlic you can buy to plant out, looks just like the garlic you use in cooking but sprouting like Helens, and at no extra cost!

I've bought my onions ready, but I need to add manure to my potager before I plant anything, which I think garlic needs as well??

No, I don't have a greenhouse - my back means that I have to limit my gardening to raised planters that are easy to maintain, so I will be quite choosy as to what I plant.

I also thought about onions as well.......

I know what you mean, the urge is there! I think onions can go out now/soon. I spent a good few hours weeding at the weekend and getting the potager ready. I did have a quick look through the seeds and a lot do say from Feb, but a friend has started her broad beans on the kitchen window ready to plant out soon. Do you have a heated greenhouse? We did in UK and would love one, but have to make do with the spare room and hope nobody wants to visit. I think I will concentrate on the weeds for now.

Thanks for that - I love garlic grown in the garden - its not quite as grand as the stuff you get at market, but the taste is excellent.

Also, its a good way to use up garlic that is beginning to sprout.

Anything else I can plant at the moment? I feel the urge.........

Helen I’d go for it! Traditionally (in UK) garlic is planted on the shortest day and harvested on the longest day. It does indeed need the cold or it won’t split into cloves. Last winter I was late planting out and did it in Jan. They grew fine, the only problem being the wet near harvest time which they didn’t like and started to rot. They don’t like it too wet at all, so not planting out at the end of last year was probably a bonus!