How to Plant and Grow Garlic for Maximum Profit and Export; Garlic is utilized in a lot of dishes, and with over 600 smaller varieties, there is great ample opportunity for gourmet garlic growers to create a niche out. For people who grow at home, an annual supply of garlic is simple to grow – and it can be given away in form braids for presents throughout the annual period if it is grown in abundance.
Species of garlic can be classified into two basic categories: hard-neck and soft-neck. Softneck species are known to be best for warm climates, while hard-neck is the garlic preferred mostly by northern garlic farmers.
Softneck garlic stores and travels better when compared to hard-neck garlic. It also possesses a stronger flavor than hard-neck garlic and in general, larger cloves.
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How to Plant and Grow Garlic for Maximum Profit and Export
- Research and find out the type of garlic people want.
- Buy the needed fresh garlic and break off some cloves from the fresh garlic head.
- Plant the cloves, pointy-side-up 2 inches (5 centimeters) deep and 8 inches (20 centimeters) apart.
- The planted cloves should be covered with mulch.
- The cloves should be fertilized or top-dressed with compost.
- Deeply water the cloves once a week if rain has not fallen.
- Gradually reduce the watering process as the season warms up.
- Harvest of the bulbs should be performed when you feel that each individual cloves and the leaves have turned yellow or brown.
How to Plant and Grow Garlic for Maximum Profit and Export: Factors To Consider
Planting Season of Garlic
You can plant garlic in the fall or in the spring. Varieties of garlic, under most conditions, do best when planted in the fall in regions like Canada. The period of fall garlic planting should be such that there is an opportunity for the roots to develop and the tops do not destroy or destabilize the surface prior to winter. Worthy of note is the fact that garlic planted during spring matures later than fall planted garlic.
Preparing Garlic Cloves for Planting
If you intend to mulch, plant cloves 2 inches deep (see Growing Notes below), 3-4 inches deep if you do not intend to mulch. But ensure you plant each clove with the pointy tip facing up and the basal/root end facing down.
Space cloves 4 to 6 inches apart in each row and 18 to 24 inches between rows for large bulbs. You can plant garlic more closely, but although you will grow more cloves, each clove will be smaller. However, many growers feel that close spacing increases total overall yield (in pounds of garlic per square foot of garden).
Planting and Growing Garlic
You can embark on planting garlic in single or double rows or in wide beds comprising four to six plants across. You should have big land size and plant garlic in well-tilled beds of six rows, which should have spacing of about eight inches between rows and between plants. The beds should have tighter spacing which will produce a larger number of smaller bulbs for a higher maximum yield as per pounds of garlic per square foot of garden. It is imperative to use hard neck garlic for planting, with the head (pointed end) of the clove up, not less than two inches below the surface. After planting the garlic, you may wish to cover it with a layer of mulch.
Garlic mulching can be very helpful. Mulching of garlic can protect against winterkill in cold climates.
It aids moderate soil temperatures, helps to check weeds, and preserves the moisture of the soil. Garlic mulching is not be done in wetter climates. Mulch for garlic may be in the form of hay, reeds, straw, swamp grass, chopped leaves or plastic.
Hardneck garlic yields a curly green flower stalk known as scape. In order for garlic to concentrate its energy to bring about larger bulb growth, garlic scapes should be harvested from the plant as it grows. However, if you want to grow the bulbils for seed, give the garlic scape an allowance for growth. Come to think of it, scapes can be eaten and are delicious.
Varieties of hard-neck yield a central stalk which goes straight up and then usually produces one or two loops. The top of garlic is called a scape, garlic flower or top set, and it has a bulge where bulbils do form from. Scapes are left open on true hard-neck garlic plants until they have produced two full loops, or for longer, and then they are cut off at a point of convenience between the loops and the leaves. For Turban types of garlic, scapes are left on until harvest time. For Asiatic and Creole types of garlic, scapes are cut after the hard-necks or at the time of harvest. If you want to produce more garlic with the use the bulbils, leave the plants in the ground after your normal time of harvest and leave the bulbils too in place till they start pushing their capsules open. In order to get rid of getting the soil on the bulbils, harvest and cure the bulbs and bulbils separately.
The soil should be moist evenly, having a dry spell two to three weeks prior to the period of harvest. When near harvest, conditions are found to be too wet, mold may grow.
Garlics do not go well with weeds around them, so ensure you keep the plot properly-weeded. This is due to the capacity of weeds in easily out-competing young garlic plants. Having good mulch helps keep weeds in check.
Even moisture of the soil in a fair manner is required by garlic during the period of its early growth and later the last few weeks, no additional moisture is required. Mulching is an example of the means of maintaining an even moisture period. Not having adequate moisture connotes that garlic will not develop a full sized bulb. However note that too much watering will bring about the garlic having poor keeping qualities – burst skins, poor wrappers, and mold.
The harvesting period of your garlic is when half to three-quarters of the underneath leaves have died. This usually occurs during mid- to late summer – July and August for most locations.
One test bulb or two should be harvested first to determine maturity. Garlic should be properly-wrapped and not split. In order to harvest garlic, open the soil with a shovel or fork and pull up plants by hand. Be cautious because garlic easily bruises. On the instance of you raising bulbils to propagate new garlic, harvest them now and separately dry them from the bulbs.
Garlic ought to be cured after it is harvested. In the course of curing, the energy derived from the leaves enters into the bulbs as they dry. Eradicate dirt chunks from the roots, while being careful not to cause bruise on the garlic. Allow the roots to be on due to the moderating effect they have on the drying rate. On possession of small amount, you can spread the plants out in a place where they are surely protected from the sun and rain and there is good air circulation. Thereafter, hang the plants – about 25 to 40 to a string in bunches of 4 to 6. A string’s appropriate number of plants depends on the string’s size and the moisture level at harvest. If you want the circulating air to be able to get to all sides of all bulbs, place the strings out of direct light where it is warm with proper air circulation – a temperature of 27°C (80°F) is most suitable and two weeks drying time is most suitable too. By this way, the bulbs dry uniformly and without spoilage. If you want the wrappers to dry and the garlic to keep possession of its moisture and oils, you hang the garlic in an open shed in a windy location. If there is enough air movement, make use of fans.
Managing Garlic Beds for Pests and Disease
Garlic does not tolerate thawing and freezing cycles, and mulching as explained above can aid this. Frost heaves has the tendency of tearing the roots off of the young cloves. Garlic is not used to summer heat either; again, mulch can be used as an aid here.
Ensure you source and acquire cloves from certified disease-free stock, due to the fact that once a field has been contaminated with white rot fungus, it may take some decades for the infection to be totally eradicated. And nematodes can reproduce in garlic for up to six seasons prior to the sudden taking of an entire crop. Besides making use of clean stock, examining plants and removing any that looks like it has disease, and utilizing sticky traps for onion thrips, are the most desirable management practices.
White rot, also known as Sclerotium cepivorum, is the worst disease of garlic. White rot is a fungus that can infect all Allium crops, inclusive of onions. Garlic plants contaminated with white rot can be identified because their leaves will change to yellow and the plants will pass away partially and wilt. The roots decay as well, so contaminated plants may uproot easily. White rot usually grows from the middle of the season to the time of harvest.
Nematodes, also known as Ditylenchus dipsaci, are another difficult garlic pest. These microscopic animals are alike with worms and reside inside the garlic plant itself, consuming it as it reproduces. Nematodes don’t require water to survive and they can reside in the soil environment for several years. The infestation of Nematode infestation can pile up for several seasons without much harm, then attack and consume an entire crop.
Onion thrips are the very most usual insect that attacks garlic. Thrips cause destruction to the leaves when they rasp to drink the sap of the plant, which limits the growth of the bulb. If serious, thrips may trigger the garlic to wilt and die.
When the wrappers of the garlic are dry, arrange your supply of garlic for long period of time storage, selling or for planting. We suggest that you bring out your own seed first. Bring out good sized, bulbs of full maturity with nice fat healthy cloves and keep them aside for planting. Planting in the fall does not require as much cleaning as you do for selling or long time storage. Cleaning requires trimming the leaves and roots and eliminating the dirty outer wrappers. If the roots are found to be crispy, dry the roots and the dirt will fall off with a couple of rubs with a glove, allowing a short brush of roots to remain. If the roots have acquired humidity you will be required to make them neat with snips, leaving 1 or 2 cm (1/2 to 1 inch). Many markets accept little dirty roots- a fast brush with a glove on the roots made neat is enough. Make the tops neat by being careful not to cut the skins guiding the individual cloves. Allow enough stem on hardnecks in order to make cracking easy. The papery wrapping helps preserve the garlic and makes it fresh. Eliminate only the most filthy outer layers of wrappers. Put the clean bulbs in clean net bags or horticulture boxes (plastic boxes with lots of air spaces), well tagged.
Garlic can be eaten fresh out of the ground. However, if you intend to preserve it for winter, you must first cure it.
Put garlic in a dark store with good ventilation for a period of two to three weeks after harvest to enable it to cure. For preservation, you can braid softneck garlic. The hardneck garlic stems should be trimmed to one inch above the bulb. Store it in a place where it will have good ventilation, 65-70% humidity, plus a temperature of 35 to 50 degrees Fahrenheit.
Garlic can be sprayed in the field to dry during warm sunny climates, but ensure it is covered with leaves to avoid sunburn.
Cured garlic can be kept for at least six months and up to a year when stored in favorable conditions.
The main thing to success as a garlic grower is planting what people want to buy. This proposition is true for any kind of business. Let’s imagine this a second time. Honda needs to manufacture a car that has the want of people, such as high fuel consumption efficiency, safe ride system, great design and fun features. Nabisco wants to produce the tastiest biscuits or snacks. So you as a garlic grower suppose to exhibit the same thing. You need to produce the varieties of garlic that people want. That’s the way you’ll be a successful garlic grower.
So in what way do you find out what people want? Go to the websites of garlic seed producers to find out which species are popular. Several years now, the “hardneck” gourmet kinds such as Porcelain, Rocambole and Purple Stripe have been selling strongly. In fact, if you find out from suppliers recently, you’ll find they are sold out of bulbs for the season! Do your findings and the garlic you produce will be in demand and bring the best gains.