Though it's getting late in some parts of the country, in many places, there's still time to get those cloves into the ground for a bountiful garlic harvest come spring.
According to Wikipedia, garlic can be grown year-round in mild climates, but in cold climates, can be planted in the ground about six weeks before the soil freezes - for a late spring harvest. Unlike many of our other herbs and other vegetables, garlic plants are not attacked by pests.
- Planting organic garlic will yield the healthiest and potentially most fruitful harvest.
- Much more interesting and better-tasting garlic cultivars that are suitable for planting can often be found at local farmers markets and nurseries, from many specialty garlic growers and through mail order or the Internet.
- HGNW columnist Vern Nelson recommends planting 10 cloves per person and says 'Inchelium Red' is among the best tasting of all garlics. 'Palawa' has great flavor without the heat, and it caramelizes wonderfully. 'Music' is good for cold areas and stores more than nine months. 'Fireball' has a very spicy flavor.
- Separate the cloves of garlic and discard any that look unhealthy. The biggest cloves will produce the biggest bulbs. One clove produces one bulb at harvest.
- Plant the cloves in a sunny location, root end down, pointed tip up, 2 to 3 inches deep, at a spacing of 10 inches between rows and 6 inches within the rows.
- Garlic will grow in poor soil, but for the best crop, plant in loose loamy soil with near-neutral pH. In general, good garden soil is good garlic-growing soil.
- Garlic immediately begins growing underground, though aboveground growth may not be visible until spring.
And here are a few tips for handling and putting that garlic to good use, from TheKitchn:
- Slow-Cooker Lemon Garlic Chicken
- Knife Skills: How to Mince Garlic
- How to Peel Garlic Quickly and Easily
- Recipe: Roasted Garlic
- Dinner for One: Sesame-Garlic Soba Noodles with Fried Egg
- Recipe: Zucchini Garlic Soup
- Recipe: Garlic Salsa Verde