Planting Garlic in the Fall

Garlic bulbs
This is for the person who just can't get enough garlic.

JoannaTkaczuk / Shutterstock

At the start of fall, it's time to start thinking about planting some of the foods that need to sit all winter in the ground for harvest next year. One of those things is garlic. When you plant garlic, you plant it straight from garlic cloves.

According to the now-deleted Your Organic Gardening Blog, the ideal time to plant garlic is around the second Monday in October in most of the country — a little later down South. Planting it this early will ensure that the plant develops a strong root system before the ground freezes.

Some other tips from the site:

  • Plant large, healthy cloves
  • Plant two to three inches deep with six inches between cloves
  • Plant root down
  • Mulch well to protect during the winter

For more detailed information on planting garlic in the fall, including when it is ready to harvest, see Tom Oder's guide to growing garlic and check out Boundary Garlic Farm’s tips for growing garlic.

An interesting stat I learned putting this post together: About 73% of the garlic sold in America comes from China. If growing garlic is as easy as these sources say it is, it wouldn’t be difficult for us to make sure our garlic comes from a local source (our backyards or a container on our balcony) than from thousands of miles away.