Do you peel garlic when planting?

Westbrook, CT(Zone 6a)

I've read several sites with information on planting garlic, but none say whether you should peel the bulblets or leave on the papery coating.
What's your advice?

Irving, TX(Zone 8a)

I never peeled garlic before planting and I had very successful harvests.
But I cannot tell you if you will have a better bulb if you DO peel the cloves ... I just never done it because the bulbs grew just fine.
Good luck !

Richland, WA(Zone 7b)

I leave mine as they are- I would think if you peeled them they would be more vulnerable to disease & insects- but thet's just a guess!

Poughkeepsie, NY(Zone 6a)

No need to peel.

Mohrsville, PA(Zone 6a)

Don't peel them. Just separate the cloves and plant about an inch deep with the points up.

Monte Vista, CO(Zone 4a)

With the exception of beans and peas, Garlic is great to plant all over the garden, even beneath your fruit trees to prevent fungus. I also repels aphids and may even repel moles. I plant my Garlic 2 to 3 inches deep since I am in zone 4a at over 7600 feet altitude, and I mulch it heavily over winter. I grew it for the first time this year, and had a great harvest with an heirloom German Hardneck variety, and enjoyed harvesting the scapes when they started curling, cooking with the chopped scapes. Mmmm.

Thumbnail by Solace
Westbrook, CT(Zone 6a)

Thanks for the fast response. I think I'll peel half of them just to see if it makes any difference, but not peeling saves a lot of effort.

Vashon, WA(Zone 8b)

I never peeled before planting for 25 years and the garlic grew just fine. Then my field got hit with a nasty allium fungus (lasts in the soil for many years), so I prepared a new area for planting away from the other part of the garden and used a sanitizing regimen for planting. I peeled the cloves of a rare variety I wanted to keep and dipped them in rubbing alcohol before planting. the fungus was not trasnfered to my new plot using this method. The plants grew just fine, no better or worse when the cloves were not peeled.

Gainesville, FL(Zone 8b)

I don't think you need to peel, but doubt it hurts unless you damage the clove in the process. Sometimes the garlic skins slip off on their own when I separate the bulbs.

-Rich

Fort Worth, TX(Zone 8a)

The only thing with peeling is bruising or damaging the bulbs in the process. I just poke a hole and place the bulb in without peeling. The peeling is considered the "seed coating" and the plant is able to break through it when emerging.

Deep East Texas, TX(Zone 8a)

Quote from DonShirer :
I've read several sites with information on planting garlic, but none say whether you should peel the bulblets or leave on the papery coating.
What's your advice?


http://www.growveg.com/growblogpost.aspx?id=262&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed:+growveg/HURk+(GrowBlog)

This site says
Quoting:
"What do you do about the cloves where the paper skin comes off as you are separating them? This happens to me a lot when I prepare to plant. Part or most of the paper wrapper will separate from the clove. Can you still plant these?"

What a great question! Garlic bulbs naturally shrink as they cure, and then shrink more in storage. This is the natural course of things, because dormancy lasts only so long, and the cloves must get busy changing into new plants. This natural shrinkage makes garlic cloves easier to peel, but naked cloves are not what you want in your garden. The wrapper/skins contain chemical compounds that do various things inhibit the emergence of a sprout until roots have formed, deter invasive microbes, and probably leach "come hither" signals to appropriate strains of garlic-friendly bacteria.


The article has much other information if interested. Kristi

Richland, WA(Zone 7b)

Thanks, Podster for the link-it is very informative. I have always added steer manure before planting, but have read some posts that said not to. i am just about ready to plant my garlic. Our 1st frost came early yesterday- so all my tender garden is gone. I have been pulling plants all week, and now must complete the task.

New Orleans, LA(Zone 9b)

I put in my garlic far too early here, and now it's growing scapes wheneve my back is turned. I'm hoping they do their vigilant job of keeping the bugs (and vampires) out of the garden, at least, but just another lesson for me in subtropical gardens.

Westbrook, CT(Zone 6a)

Thanks for that link, podster, it was very informative.

Another source I found was thegarlicstore.com
They have a growing guide and a video available.

Monte Vista, CO(Zone 4a)

I've decided to plant some of my garlic harvest inside the greenhouse for the anti-fungal properties. I don't peel it, by the way.

I ordered another type of hardneck for next season, but was notified that there's a phytoplasma? problem with garlic this year, so will not plant it near anything else this year. I was hoping to plant garlic beneath my fruit trees, but not if there is a possible phytoplasma problem, I think not. I may plant some of last year's garlic beneath the trees. Best get to it asap, 'cause it was 23 degrees here this morning. Aarghhhh.

Blessings, all.

DJ

Gainesville, FL(Zone 8b)

Quote from Solace :
I've decided to plant some of my garlic harvest inside the greenhouse for the anti-fungal properties.

Is there actually any evidence that planted garlic will do anything?

In cooking, you have to cut it or mash it even to make the "healthy" compound in garlic active. Old herbal descriptions of garlic use always described the process of mashing the raw cloves as the first step in preparation. We now know that the breaking of garlic cells releases an enzyme (allicinase) that then transforms the inactive compound alliin into an active form (allicin). That's why baked or especially microwaved garlic, while it is pleasant to eat, lacks the active compounds and healthy properties found in other cooked types.

Yes I know it's counter-intuitive. We've all been fed the philosophy of "best is raw, next best is least processed". Biology cares not a whit for our philosophy. I find it refreshing to remember that nature was here first and operates well without us - or our interpretations, prejudices and fantasies.

-Rich

Monte Vista, CO(Zone 4a)

I have plenty of pests that can bite into the garlic to release that allicin, which I understand has some pesticidal properties or at the very least, is a pest deterrent, as well...but who knows? If there's garlic growing around every aspen and fruit tree on the place, next summer, at least I will have tried. :)

Gainesville, FL(Zone 8b)

Quote from Solace :
I have plenty of pests that can bite into the garlic to release that allicin, which I understand has some pesticidal properties or at the very least, is a pest deterrent

I really don't enjoy bursting bubbles, but I don't like people to be disappointed by false expectations either.

Allicin, once produced and exposed to air, has a very short period of activity unless it is "fixed" (e.g. in oil or somehow otherwise preserved, if you'll pardon the perfumery reference).

And garlic itself is subject to all sorts of pests and diseases. The University of California at Davis Integrated Pest Management guidelines (http://www.ipm.ucdavis.edu/PMG/selectnewpest.onion-and-garlic.html) lists 15 diseases and 5 insects that commonly infect/attack garlic, so it is hardly a panacea.

At least you'll enjoy eating the garlic. If it survives... ;o)

SE Houston (Hobby), TX(Zone 9a)

Nola_Nigella,
There's still plenty of time to replant your garlic! Go buy a bag of garlic from your local Sam's Club/Costco, or the Farmer's Market, or down in the French Quarter at one of the stands, or from a local producer, or from a nearby Whole Foods Store that sells organic.

I haven't planted mine yet -- nor have I purchased it! I'm going to Sam's Club. First time planting garlic, and, I'm growing my own onion transplants for planting in late December-mid January.

But, I DID score enough FREE CEDAR today to make my garlic/onion planting beds!

Linda

Monte Vista, CO(Zone 4a)

rjogden, thanks for the info and valuable opinions on things. I have also used crushed garlic mixed with murphy's oil soap and water to spray around for pests. I'm not an expert, though, but if something works I tend to keep doing it. If not, it's history. :)

Richland, WA(Zone 7b)

I have about 150 garlic cloves that are ready to plant, but the space is still being used by some late corn. So today I put them in some temporary homes so they can get some roots started. I just put them deep enough to be covered, about 2" apart. Then when their permament bed is ready and enriched with steer manure compost, they should have a bit of a head start for the winter. I always have real good luck, and I just use grocery store garlic.
Gymgirl, I too am growing seed onions-WallaWalla- they are doing great, about the thickness of a drinking straw. Before a hard freeze comes I will dig them up and plant them somewhere protected-as yet unknown!

SE Houston (Hobby), TX(Zone 9a)

That's great news Jo!

When did you sow your seeds? I started mine about 13 days ago.

Las Vegas, NV(Zone 9a)

I planted my onion seed yesterday. Zone 9a

Gymgirl, The Siberian seeds I ordered finally came in today (backorder issue on another product). I will drop them in the mail tomorrow. Congrats on the free cedar!

I will be growing garlic for the first time this year. I am planning on planting sometime in November?!? I have two varieties I ordered from Jung Seeds (Not the company that had the back order issues).

SE Houston (Hobby), TX(Zone 9a)

Just remember that garlic takes approximately SEVEN to EIGHT months until harvest, so be sure to plant in a spot you do not intend to use for awhile!

New Orleans, LA(Zone 9a)

Here in New Orleans, I planted my garlic about 10 days ago. I had purchased a warm winter assortment from Gourmet Garlic. I checked on them this morning & several have little green shoots coming up!

The assortment I received included Early Red Italian, Applegate Giant, Inchelium Red, Rogue River Red, and Native Creole. I had no idea there were so many different varieties of garlic!! It'll be interesting, in 7-8 months, to see how the tastes differ.
Jo-Ann

Madison, AL(Zone 7b)

It seems to early to plant to me; I won't plant until the end of this month.

New Orleans, LA(Zone 9b)

It definitely feels too warm for garlic, but I'll give it another try in a few weeks and leave the others in the ground. Maybe it'll serve against the bugs? Last year, it didn't freeze ever, so who knows what'll come around!

Thanks for the encouragement, y'all, it'll all work out one way or another.

Deep East Texas, TX(Zone 8a)

I leave an heirloom garlic planted in a perennial bed year around as is common in this area.

It is right on schedule and beginning to sprout. Like most bulbs, the weather does not seem to affect their growth cycle.

Nature is still in charge.

New Orleans, LA(Zone 9a)

On my morning walk through the garden today, I can see several of my garlics beginning to sprout!
Jo-Ann

Alba, TX(Zone 8a)

I usually plant my garlic on Halloween. When I first moved down here to NE Texas one of the locals told me that was the traditional date to plant garlic in this area. I works for me as it is easy to remember and garlic kind of associates with Halloween. Ward of the werewolves, plant garlic--or is that vampires? We are supposed to have very near to a full moon on H'ween this year. Perhaps I'll plant to the moonlight! With the coyotes (erzatz werewolves) howling in the background. Then go in and watch "Young Frankenstein", my favorite Halloween movie!

By the way, I don't peal my garlic before planting either...

SE Houston (Hobby), TX(Zone 9a)

What's the planting medium for the garlic bed? I'm going to build the frame for a small bed this weekend, and have a couple bags of MG garden soil and some leftover pine bark fines to fill it. I'm thinking I should add a bag of composted manure or some Black Kow compost.

Lemme know!

Thanks!

Alba, TX(Zone 8a)

My last two garlic beds were first year lasagna beds. So losts of compost, shredded leaves, bone meal, some grass clippings....that sort of thing.

SE Houston (Hobby), TX(Zone 9a)

Thanks, Terri!

Brady, TX(Zone 8a)

Quote from Gymgirl :
What's the planting medium for the garlic bed? I'm going to build the frame for a small bed this weekend, and have a couple bags of MG garden soil and some leftover pine bark fines to fill it. I'm thinking I should add a bag of composted manure or some Black Kow compost.


Linda, in your earlier post you mentioned the free cedar -- how are you planning to use that?
Mary

Brady, TX(Zone 8a)

Oops, forgot to ask: any thoughts on planting garlic in cinder-block holes? I'm thinking one or two cloves per the 4 inch holes? Had another question but my mind just burped.... I'll be back when I remember what to ask!

Richland, WA(Zone 7b)

TX- I would not put more than 1 garlic in a cinder block hole- any more they would not have growing space. Some of mine grow to nearly 4" across.

SE Houston (Hobby), TX(Zone 9a)

Hi Mary,
My first use of the cedar pickets is to face the outside of all the pressure treated pine raised beds I'm building. Then, I found Anna White's DIY website where she's using the cedar pickets to, duh, make the raised beds. So, I'll go ahead and use the 2x4 pieces to build a small frame for the garlic and onion bed, and all future beds will be made from the cedar pickets and called cedar lumber.

There are many small DIY projects I can use the other pieces for in the garden. I have plans for some small benches. Once I seal them with tung and linseed oil over a period of months, those cedar cast offs will be worth their weight in gold.

Linda

Brady, TX(Zone 8a)

Linda, as I continued to read various posts/threads (many, many, hard to keep up!) I realized ya meant to use your cedar for building --- I use cedar MULCH so when ya mentioned cedar guess what my mind was thinking.....

SE Houston (Hobby), TX(Zone 9a)

I purchased garlic cloves at Whole Foods Store yesterday. They're in the fridge until I get the garlic bed built in the next couple days.

Monte Vista, CO(Zone 4a)

Gotta get mine in the ground soon.

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