The cool thing about cool weather is that there is some stuff you can still get in the ground and get a jump on spring. In my Connecticut zone, you can get some great early garlic (June) by planting a crop in the fall.
Now.. the secret to good fall garlic planting?
And in my case I may have blown it, but we’ll see. I’ve got myself a resilient, feisty garlic type (russian red.. spicy and delicious) and I think it’s going to be okay. But.. tonight… the frost comes. The trick to garlic timing is that you want to get it in the ground and give it some time to settle in a bit, but you don’t want it to be so warm that the garlic starts to grow. Some roots.. sure. That’s fine. But the start of a neck? Probably bad.
Ideally I would have gotten these guys in the dirt maybe a week or two ago, but my beds are raised and should be okay through this freeze/frost. We’ll see.
Here’s how you do it.
- Break apart the full garlic bulb into individual cloves.
- Plant each garlic clove an inch or two into the ground.
- The pointy side should point.. up. The root side is usually a little flatter.
- Cover em up with some dirt.
- In my case, I added some nice maple leaves on top with some straw just to serve as an insulator for these first few weeks.
- In the spring, they’ll start growing nicely.
- Enjoy some scape! Grow a hard neck variety and you’ll get this extra bit of yumminess. (The scape is essentially the neck, but it’s cut early and eaten.. also helps the garlic to keep growing.)