It has been said that once you taste home-grown garlic, you’ll never reach for the store-bought version again. And the good news is: it’s incredibly easy to grow your own. Just pull the biggest cloves off of the bulb, and plant in loose fertile soil with the pointy tip facing up. Fertilize and water well.
Typically, garlic should be planted in the late fall; however, it is not too late to plant your garlic cloves in April. If planting in the fall, then place the cloves in the soil about 2 inches deep – if planting in April, then place the cloves just below the surface.
Harvest your garlic in late spring or early summer, when the plants have 5 or 6 green leaves. Gently pull them out of the soil after you have pried them loose by poking a garden fork under the bulbs.Your garlic is ready to eat!
If you want to store it, then you must let your garlic cure for a few weeks. This you do by hanging the bulbs with their foliage bundled, or by spreading them out on a rack or table.
After a few weeks, trim the roots close to the bulb and trim the stalks down to about 12 inches. Gently remove the outer layer of skin off the bulb, and also any loose soil. Finally, store the bulbs in a dry, dark, and well-ventilated place.
Before you start, choose your type of garlic – there are two types; Softnecks and Hardnecks. Softnecks do better in warmer climates, and tend to make smaller, stronger flavored cloves. Hardnecks prefer a real winter, after which their stiff stem creates a beautiful mini-bulbed flower.