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A picture of a Garlic

Garlic

Allium sativum

Also known as

Cultivated Garlic, Garden Garlic

Full Sun
Easy care
Moderate watering
Frost Hardy

H6

RHS hardiness

-20°C

Minimum temperature

Expected size

Height
Spread

1.2m

Max

30cm

30cm

Min

20cm

Flowering

  • spring
  • summer
  • autumn
  • winter

This plant has a strong fragrance

More images

A photo of Garlic
A photo of Garlic
A photo of Garlic
A photo of Garlic
A photo of Garlic

Overview

Allium sativum is more commonly known by the name Garlic. This species is an easy to grow member of the Amaryllidaceae family, producing a compact bulb of individual cloves which can be used for propagation. This plant needs minimal maintenance, keep the area where they are growing weed-free and well-watered. Garlic grows in a wide variety of soil conditions as long as it is well-drained, fertile and has a near-neutral pH. Plant out cloves in late summer to early autumn for the best results. Garlic grows in two ways, 'Hardneck' or 'Softneck'. Hardneck types produce an edible flower stem and cloves that do not store well but some produce pretty bulbs and cloves. Softneck types store for longer than Hardneck varieties and some produce 10-16 cloves per bulb.

Common problems

Plant cloves deeply to prevent freezing which causes White Rot fungus. Rotate crops and clear the area after harvesting to prevent disease buildup. Pink root stunts the roots and turns them pink or red.

Companion plants

Beetroot, brassicas, tomatoes, lettuce, spinach, eggplant

Harvesting

Garlic bulbs will be ready to harvest within 6 to 7 months when tops begin to yellow and fall over but harvest them before they dry out. Cure plants by hanging the bulbs in a cool dry place.

Propagation

Seed

Sowing seeds in Summer and Autumn, 3-4 cm deep and 7-10 cm apart.

Special Features

Pot plant

Garlic can be grown in a pot as long as the container is deeper than 10 cm

Repels harmful insects

Works as an insect repellant

Crop rotation

Garlic is a light feeder, rotate crops annually to avoid a build up of disease in the soil.

Uses

Culinary, medicinal

Edible

Garlic cloves can be eaten raw or cooked and the flower neck of the Hardneck variety is edible and can be eaten in salads or stir-fries​.