How to plant garlic? In this October episode from the market gardening series I’ll show you the exact process we follow to plant garlic in our no dig garden beds.
I start with first showing you a little overview of the entire process going from planting to harvesting and drying the garlic.
After that I’ll show you how I plant a full bed of garlic for next year. This planting process is pretty straight forward.
You grab the garlic bulbs and remove the individual cloves from the bulb. At this point I only collect the largest and healthiest garlic cloves. Everything that’s small, damaged and no-so-fresh-looking won’t be planted (but will be used in our own kitchen).
With the cloves removed from the bulbs it’s time to plant them in the beds.
The trick to get a great production from your garlic plantings is to make sure to plant them in well drained soils that have been amended with a nice layer of high quality compost.
In my case I include about two or three wheelbarrows of freshly made compost onto our beds before planting the garlic. (Our beds are 10 meters by 75 centimeters / 33 feet by 30 inches)
You can see that process in this video, around the third minute: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TVoruCmpfUI&list=PL5My47TRn9ydMPSTt-5kpxPeL277dpPhZ&index=9&ab_channel=DutchFarmerMoreno
After amending the bed I use my bed roller to mark out the spacing for the individual garlic cloves.
In my case I like to plant garlic in three rows per bed, each cloves spaced at 12.5 cm (5 inches).
To mark out the spacing I use a tool called: “Gridder”. You can see the process in this video, around minute 4.5: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xy-hGfP22Mk&list=PL5My47TRn9yfIi_LPyOAdJ22xkfEoLw5o&index=2&ab_channel=DutchFarmerMoreno
A single pass with the gridder over the bed gives me a straight and clear visual overview of where I’ll have to plant the individual garlic cloves.
I then lay out all the cloves onto the grid and start planting them once they’re all laid out.
When it comes to planting garlic it’s important you plant them in the right way. The garlic cloves have a bottom and a top. You want to make sure to plant them with their bottoms down, about twice the depth of the clove itself. (The bottom is where the roots will come out and the top is where the shoot will come out. See minute: 04:03)
You can either make a little hole with your finger or if your soil is loose enough you can simply push the garlic clove into the ground. You can see the process around minute 03:57.
After planting an individual garlic clove I cover it slightly with a bit of compost from the bed and move my way down the row until the entire bed has been planted.
Since we don’t experience extreme winter conditions on our farm we don’t really have to protect the garlic from the elements so we can let the bed as is. In colder regions you might want to consider using a nice thick layer of straw give the garlic a little bit more protection from the elements during the winter.
Once spring arrives simply remove the straw so the soil can warm up faster and your garlic will benefit from this extra heat.
Hope you’ll enjoy the video and you’ll get a great crop of garlic from your gardens next year!
If you want to learn more about starting a farm, in my free eBook I show you the exact steps we’ve taken that allowed us to farm full time. Feel free to download it here: https://join.thedutchfarmer.com/free-ebook