29 August 2017 Garlic Bed (Preparation)


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http://durgan.org/2017/August 2017/29 August 2017 Garlic Bed/HTML/ 29 August 2017 Garlic Bed
The garlic bed was prepared for the 2017\2018 season to be planted in October. The selected area is rototilled and the rows are marked with boards. The whole area is covered with wood chip mulch and sprinkled with some 20 20 20 pellet fertilizer. When the garlic cloves are planted in October the board is flipped up and the clove placed in the ground and mulch is placed over the row. In the Spring when the cloves start growing they have no difficulty pushing through the mulch. The mulch is sufficient to keep moisture and the bed needs no care until harvest in July of 2018. There are 12 rows 8 feet long sufficient for about 16 cloves per row. Spacing is about six inches in the row.
garlic%20bed%20004_std.jpg
 
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Hi Durgan.
You seem to know about growing garlic.
For the first time i am growing garlic over the winter period.
I was under the impression the garlic would basically sit dormant over the winter period and start shooting in the spring.
To my amazement mine has seemingly been booming all winter.
Just hit spring here and the growth has been awesome.



Am i missing something here and will be disappointed with all scapes and no bulbs?
Or will it be a healthy crop?
Cheers.
 
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That is beautiful garlic. Don't over water and watch it grow. Unless you use the scapes leave them on and harvest about a month later than usual. The cloves will split the bulb, be larger, and keep as well as other harvesting methods.
 
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http://durgan.org/2017/August 2017/29 August 2017 Garlic Bed/HTML/ 29 August 2017 Garlic Bed
The garlic bed was prepared for the 2017\2018 season to be planted in October. The selected area is rototilled and the rows are marked with boards. The whole area is covered with wood chip mulch and sprinkled with some 20 20 20 pellet fertilizer. When the garlic cloves are planted in October the board is flipped up and the clove placed in the ground and mulch is placed over the row. In the Spring when the cloves start growing they have no difficulty pushing through the mulch. The mulch is sufficient to keep moisture and the bed needs no care until harvest in July of 2018. There are 12 rows 8 feet long sufficient for about 16 cloves per row. Spacing is about six inches in the row.
garlic%20bed%20004_std.jpg

How high do you pile your wood chips over the winter?
 
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The wood chips stay in the bed. The garlic plants in the early Spring grow though wood chips. It is like they are not there. I place two to three inches of chips. Ameliorate the ground temperature in Winter and retain moisture during he growing season from evaporation.
 
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The wood chips stay in the bed. The garlic plants in the early Spring grow though wood chips. It is like they are not there. I place two to three inches of chips. Ameliorate the ground temperature in Winter and retain moisture during he growing season from evaporation.
The contact layer between chips and soil is nitrogen deficient whilst the woodchips rot, but that layer is so thin that it doesn't affect the garlic, however, my understanding is that this suppresses annual weeds it two ways:
1) Seeds that are below the contact level are buried too far to germinate.
2) Seeds in that layer which do germinate then starve for want of nitrogen.
 
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Weed suppression is never astounding. The one's that grow usually have weak roots so are easy to pull. I use the chips to reduce moisture loss though evaporation. Amazing how much moisture the mulch retains. The mulch reduces quickly, in over winter the chips have composted into the soil. Also I have an exhaustible supply at $10.00 per yard. I never encountered nitrogen loss due to using wood chip mulch.
 
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I grew garlic for the first time this year. I planted it last October and harvested it this August. I got a lot of little bulbs about the size of golf balls and some nice sized ones also. I covered the bed with pine branches after I planted them and removed the pine branches after the snow had melted. I had a guy at a local garlic festival tell me he covers his beds with 18" of straw. That sounds like a bit much.
 
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Weed suppression is never astounding. The one's that grow usually have weak roots so are easy to pull. I use the chips to reduce moisture loss though evaporation. Amazing how much moisture the mulch retains. The mulch reduces quickly, in over winter the chips have composted into the soil. Also I have an exhaustible supply at $10.00 per yard. I never encountered nitrogen loss due to using wood chip mulch.
I have found weed suppression, which is a real problem on my allotment site, to be fantastic with woodchips!
Perhaps if you have less of a problem you less notice the benefit.
 

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