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Did I blow it? I only just today finished getting the bed ready for garlic and was planning to plant it tomorrow. We've had two straight sub-freezing days, though, and no signs of any significant warm-ups in the near future (I'm in Western Massachusetts). Should I still plant? Should I plant and then lay black plastic over the bed for a couple of weeks to warm the soil a bit?

Thanks.
 

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The last date that you can plant garlic this year is 31 December so you still have 6 weeks to get it done. If your ground freezes and you can't easily dig holes, use a hatchet to chip out the holes. After that, use straw or shredded leaves for mulch if you have it. If not, don't worry about it. Just make certain that the cloves are covered with at least an inch of soil. Then do nothing more until harvest in July.

Martin
 

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Go for it. I put some out last weekend.
 

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Two years ago, we finished up planting into hard frozen ground at www.wegrowgarlic.com Mike used a bulb auger to make the holes and we combined in setting the cloves in place. I took care of filling the holes by gathering together the chips and trying to scrape a little more dirt from the surface. Just the 2 of us, 7 non-stop hours, 3,200 cloves, never again!

Garlic planted this late in cold zones does not require mulching unless one wants to do it just for weed control. With zero root development, there are no roots which may be damaged by freeze-thaw-freeze cycles in the spring. What one is doing is placing the cloves into cold storage for the winter. Nice thing is that garlic cloves will begin growing as soon as the soil temperature is barely above freezing but usually long before the soil can be tilled. You may not see growth until a month after the ground has thawed but it will have a good root system by then.

Martin
 

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If anyone hasn't get any garlic to grow, I've still got a hardneck Italian Mountain Red and a small softneck that we call Spice World in some quantity. Also a fair amount of Martin's. When those are gone, probably 300 or so mixed small leftover unidentified bulbs of Music, Slovenian, Martin's, and whatever. That's our kitchen stock and thus all goes into the same bag.

Martin
 

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I'd love some of the hardneck Italian! Is it a good variety for Michigan?

Martin's too if it will do well here.

Alison
 

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I'd love some of the hardneck Italian! Is it a good variety for Michigan?

Martin's too if it will do well here.

Alison
All harnecks would do well in Michigan. Most have their origins in the colder parts of Europe and Asia and are hardy in Zone 3.

Let me know by PM as to how many holes you wish to fill. I can easily come up with 25 cloves each of Martin's and Italian Mountain Red which about fill my normal mailing box.

Martin
 

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Can you use store bought garlic to grow? I know it does sprout, cause its doing it in my frig!!
 

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Can you use store bought garlic to grow? I know it does sprout, cause its doing it in my frig!!
Absolutely! You're limited to whatever variety is available and usually that's California Early, Silver White, or similar. And almost always a softneck type. The only thing to watch for is if the root ends are trimmed too close.

If you have a Spice World prepackaged garlic display in your local supermarket, there's one that has 2 small bulbs in a box and weighing 2 ounces. Those cloves may be planted at about 4" spacing and the bulbs store quite well. We've been growing them for the past 2 years at www.wegrowgarlic.com but can't sell them until we know what variety they are. So far, Spice World won't respond with a name. They were added as box fillers this past season so that others may also enjoy them.

Martin
 

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Great, thanks Martin!
 

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Wow! This was one of the threads I was going to start, asking about planting garlic. Most of my questions have been answered. Only one left. I read where you said that you can plant even now, but the area that I am wanting to put the garlic in has not been tilled yet. As of right now it is just dead grass. Can I plant the garlic now, and till the rest of the area in the spring? Any advice for me here? If the ground is not frozen we can till or double dig or something like that, but if the ground is not worked, I can still plant it right? I will just have to deal with the grass next year, right? Thanks in advance for your help.
God bless you and yours
Deb
 

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If you were to clear an 8" path down through the grass now and plant, that would be fine. Then deal with the grass between the rows in the spring. You should still have time down there since your ground hasn't frozen yet. Spade it about 8" deep. Be certain to get as many of the grass roots as possible from your row since garlic will not tolerate any competition.

Martin
 

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If anyone hasn't get any garlic to grow, I've still got a hardneck Italian Mountain Red and a small softneck that we call Spice World in some quantity. Also a fair amount of Martin's. When those are gone, probably 300 or so mixed small leftover unidentified bulbs of Music, Slovenian, Martin's, and whatever. That's our kitchen stock and thus all goes into the same bag.

Martin
If you have any of the Red or Martin's left as well as any strange little no-name bulbs. I would be so happy to get some. A mystery in the garden is always fun!
Let me know what recompense you require.
 

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If you have any of the Red or Martin's left as well as any strange little no-name bulbs. I would be so happy to get some. A mystery in the garden is always fun!
Let me know what recompense you require.
I can give you the last 4 ounces of Martin's and 5 ounces of mixed cloves for $10. About 70 cloves total. Pay when you get them. PM a mailing address so I can get them into the mail right away.

Martin
 

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If you were to clear an 8" path down through the grass now and plant, that would be fine. Then deal with the grass between the rows in the spring. You should still have time down there since your ground hasn't frozen yet. Spade it about 8" deep. Be certain to get as many of the grass roots as possible from your row since garlic will not tolerate any competition.

Martin
Thanks Martin, you answered my question. It was as I thought. Hmmm now how to get one or more kids out there digging up the grass???? LOL!
God bless you and yours
Deb
 

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I live down in SW Arkansas. I was wondering if I will need to plant by the end of the month or can I wait longer? The temps here are not as bad as some of you all experience. We have hit the upper 20s a couple of times so far this year but nothing really cold!!!
 
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