Ya’know how they say plant garlic on the shortest day, harvest on the longest? Well, that’s never really worked for me. I always got such tiny, squiddly little bulbs that I simply couldn’t be bothered using them for cooking. Last year, when I left my bulbs in the ground longer, I got better results. And this year I’m planning for some decent-sized bulbs by getting them in early — one whole month early.
This isn’t a very radical idea – I’ve heard lots of other gardeners I respect say the same thing lately. And all though today was drizzly and yuck, I got out there and planted my garlic.
I’m trialling three different types of heirloom garlic this year, which I’ve kindly been gifted by a friend. Two types of rocombole and kakanui – very exciting. I’m prepping an article now on the heirloom garlic in NZ – should be together by end of the week… please hold.
This is how I’ve planted my garlic
A couple of weeks ago I dug over the beds for my garlic, added some well-composted material and sprinkled in lime. I’ve made sure the spots were well-draining. I’ve planted the cloves about 12cm apart, pointy end up and covered them with about 4cm of soil.
I keep my garlic well-weeded, and well-fertilised right up into spring while the green tops are growing.
For a really good article on garlic planting, I thoroughly recommend Kath Irvine’s Edible Backyard piece.