Question My Garlic

KathrynJN

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I have pulled up my garlic and have no idea what I did wrong. I planted garlic from the grocery store, and they all came up. A few seemed to have died, but most of them are like in the photo. Some look like elephant garlic, the one in the middle seemed to be the only one that started growing correctly, and the rest are like the bottom one and grew weirdly. This is my first year seriously trying to grow garlic and, as I said, I have no idea where I went wrong. Any ideas?

My Garlic
 
Hi there,
I´m not that educated on growing garlic in the subtropic, but I heard (from Mark) that it can be very tricky, cause it's not cold enough in that climate.

I can state a few facts I know of growing garlic, from where I live (temperate climate) and maybe you'll find some differences to what you did🤔 don't know if that'll help but I'll give it a try:

  • Garlic doesn't like competition, it's best planted about 10-15cm apart and weeded regularly or mulched
  • Garlic likes the more fluffy, loose earth that drains very well but not too sandy much more humus-like- and hates heavy, wett soil
  • Garlic does like it sunny and a bit breezy

Type difference:
  • Wintergarlic produces big bulbs, but has a longer growing season (planted in autumn , sept-okt in northern hemisphere; and harvested mid summer1 year later), the longer growing period makes it more likable to get pests too, it's not recommended for beginnergardeners around here, and is just recommended to be planted like that if you have harsh winters, otherwise you have only the option to plant every type in spring, or they just won't grow well
  • Springgarlic produces smaller bulbs, but can be harvested in one growing season (planted in spring, mar-apr northern hemisphere, and harvested in mid summer), isn't as likeable to get pests
---
  • cut back the sprouts to about 10cm in spring, that way the plant puts all it't energy into the bulb and not the leaves
  • during winter no watering
  • during growing season, water regularly
  • if the leaves get yellow before mid-summer they need more nutrients
  • Bulbs are ready to be harvested if the tips of the leaves start to get yellow
Thats all I know about. maybe there are some points you can take advantage of

cheers
 
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I've had some bulbs come out like the 2 top ones (never the bottom one though) and I had left them to fend for themselves. Personal experience was low watering at key times, no feeding and general care. I got some decent bulbs but keeping up watering and a slow release fertilizer applied a couple of times during growing and my garlic this year is WAY better. This is growing in a compost/wood chip mix which is very loose soil.
 
Thanks Lunai for your suggestions. I know there wasn't any competition for them and the raised garden bed was in the sun. The only thing might be the soil. Next year I'll try in another bed that has more compost in it and see how I go.

Thanks Briztank for your suggestions also. I know I didn't keep up with fertilizer much during the year, so that is something I'll have to keep an eye on. Getting excess rain from our storms probably wouldn't help.
 
Thanks Lunai for your suggestions. I know there wasn't any competition for them and the raised garden bed was in the sun. The only thing might be the soil. Next year I'll try in another bed that has more compost in it and see how I go.

Thanks Briztank for your suggestions also. I know I didn't keep up with fertilizer much during the year, so that is something I'll have to keep an eye on. Getting excess rain from our storms probably wouldn't help.
hi there
I just came across this awsome Vid about garlic from a professional gardener. Thought it might be interresting to you, to top up the knowledge Mark has already provided in his two Videos 2nd one here.
 
Not a garlic expert by far, but have had several crops. A lot of the issue will be the weather we've had, that bottom one is suffering from witches broom. The irregular weather cycles mean the garlic doesn't know weather it's coming or going, and reshoots from the cloves. You've likely done nothing wrong, and the garlic is still edible. Tassie gourmet garlic has some fantastic resources on soil preparation available, I've linked them in my post here. How tall are your raised beds? I'm noticing this season, my garlic in tall raised beds is fine, a bit hard to keep the nitrogen up with all the rain but fine, whereas my garlic in shorter raised beds has suffered from witches broom. Luckily they were 'bonus' plants and never counted on having a harvest from.
 
Thanks for the info JoshW. Gardening Australia did a video/article on Tassie gourmet back in 2018. I didn't know the name of them, so I'll look more into them for next year.

My garden beds are Birdies 385mm high. I do have an area that is a ground garden, so I could try some in there next year, as well as a raised bed, and see if there is any difference.

Thanks again.
 
Hi Kathryn a bit late on the reply you would be better to buy your garlic stock from a seed supply company I planted last season's crop on the 15 of March using Glen Large cloves which I soaked for 12 hours in a weak seasol solution before planting. Once growing a feed of blood and bone is good and a drink of seasol later in the season ease up on water as the plants mature ready for picking. Photo of last season crop 150 bulbs Hope this helps. DaveMy GarlicMy Garlic
 
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Thank you Wedgetail. I forgot that it will soon be time to plant garlic again, so I'll have to go in search of some.
 
I purchased the Glenlarge garlic from Green Harvest very happy with the product and had about 99 percent strike rate .2 years ago I purchased from a big supplier D#####s C##b the product was rubbish some bulbs full of dry rot any many never germinated. Cheers.
 
I'm surprised with your big supplier purchased. Sort of thought better of them than that.

I found The Seed Garlic shop and ordered ten different bulbs, so we'll see how they go.
 
Hi Mandy garlic can be a touchy with water and your beds need to drain freely what time of year did you plant? I planted 1 lot in July as a test run but wet season arrived before they matured and same result as you also there is only a couple of types that can grow up this way plant a cool climate 1 and pretty much doomed from the start. Solution do your homework and start with the right type I will be planting the Glenlarge again mid March hope they grow as good this season have a great day. Cheers Dave
 
It's absolutely soaking wet outside right now, but I planted them a fair while ago, before all the rain. But even the ones I kept above a jar of water (as I ate the 'leaves') somehow rotted from the top down. It started as a hole next to the stem and over a week's time it just turned to mush from the inside out. The stem never discoloured though, and stayed green until the day I got rid of it 🤔
 
That's a bugger you get excited the crop is looking good and then that happens. If you try some Glenlarge planted mid to late march you might have better luck even the ones I planted mid April produced much smaller bulbs all the best. Dave
 
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