Garlic, with the scientific name Allium sativum , is one of the most cultivated and consumed plants in the world thanks to its extensive culinary and nutritional properties. It is believed that the origin of this plant takes us to Asia, although it was spread to Europe and the Middle East thousands of years ago.
The bulb, with an intense flavor and smell when cut, has already been appreciated in Egyptian and ancient Greek cultures for the many benefits it brings to health. If you want to know how to plant garlic step by step in your own home, follow us in this article.
When to plant garlic
The best season to plant garlic depends a lot on the climate of the area where you live. In most areas of the Mediterranean, garlic is usually grown between late autumn and early winter , as it is a plant that germinates well in the cold of a mild winter.
However, if the climate you live in is very cold winters, it is recommended to plant it after the worst of winter has passed. In temperate zones it can be planted twice a year, in spring and autumn .
How to plant garlic step by step
When sowing garlic at home , either in a pot or in the garden, the simplest and most common thing is to use cloves from the bulb itself, that is, those used in the kitchen. The garlic that is usually bought is nothing more than the underground bulb of the plant, and although it is possible to sow garlic seeds, which look like tiny garlic cloves, their growth is much faster when the large cloves are planted directly. Follow these simple steps to plant garlic at home :
- Choose the location of the garlic. If you are going to plant them outdoors, dig small holes 2 to 3 cm deep, about 15 cm apart. If you are planting multiple rows, leave twice the space between them. In a pot, it will be enough to choose one that is about 20 cm deep.
- Stir the soil to oxygenate and thin it, and compost it with organic compost to prepare it for the garlic. Both in pot and outdoors, a layer of compost will help the harvest to be fruitful.
- Bury the head of garlic in the hole, always with the pointed part facing up.
If you sow from seeds you can follow these same steps, but it will take about two years to be able to harvest your first garlic.
How to grow garlic – basic care
Now that you know how to plant garlic at home, we continue with the basic care and cultivation of garlic :
Drainage, irrigation and humidity
As is the case with many bulbs, one of the main enemies of garlic is excess humidity. For this reason, it is necessary that the soil or pot in which you plant your garlic has good drainage, and that the watering is not excessive. This is a very delicate point, since if the soil is too dry you will have small size garlic, but if you water them excessively it is very likely that your plants will suffer attacks from fungi or diseases. It is recommended to maintain a slight level of humidity in the ground, without ever getting waterlogged.
Light and location
When it comes to light, garlic always appreciates the sun. Both outdoors and indoors, it is recommended to plant them in an area where they receive a great contribution of sunlight, and only in very hot climates or with very intense sun should they be located in semi-shady areas.
Garlic flowers and seeds
It is also important to cut the flowers of the plants as soon as they appear if what you want is to harvest large and tasty garlic. Otherwise, the plant will divert its nutrients to the flower and stem, and the bulb will be smaller. If instead you want to collect seeds, you can let some flowers develop.
When the garlic is harvested
Once the leaves of the plant have dried or withered, it is time to harvest the garlic . You will have to uproot the plant to keep its bulb, which is the head of garlic, and let it dry in the sun for a few days. If you have planted before winter or at the end of it, the most normal thing is that the moment of the harvest arrives between May and July .