If you’re unsure when to plant garlic in the UK, you can mark your calendar in early October. Among the best vegetables to grow in the UK, experts recommend autumn planting for this Allium species. It’s also worth mentioning that the UK is under growing zones 4 to 5, which is a significant factor in your planting dates for crops.
Garlic production can be a profitable endeavour or a simple habit that will give you vegetables full of cardiovascular benefits. But because the UK is prone to experiencing extreme environments, gardeners must study practices and plans before planting garlic. One of the drawbacks you want to avoid is frost damage, and a polytunnel is an easy solution for this.
How To Know When To Plant Garlic In the UK
Knowing when to plant garlic in the UK is key to a successful and fruitful harvest. According to the Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources of UNL, it’s best to plant garlic in early October or very early in spring. This date is ideal because you have finished planting before the ground freezes.
It’s best to plant your crops six weeks before the ground reaches low temperatures. Simultaneously, the extension mentioned that planting garlic in autumn leads to a significant yield than planting in spring. However, because you’re planting in autumn, remember to monitor the conditions.
You can refer to Krostrade.com and read more about polytunnel gardening. This method is excellent for countries like Great Britain that are prone to having harsh winters. This way, you can protect your garlic crops from damages.
What’s The Best Month To Plant Garlic?
As previously mentioned, October is the best month to plant garlic in the UK. October will give you the best yield so that the young plants get exposed to cold temperatures. When the dormant cloves experience 32 to 50°F for one to two months, they start forming bulbs.
If you get late and start planting in mid-September, you can expect drawbacks. The main point here is that the cloves should start growing early, undergoing dormancy when the cold temperatures start.
When planting garlic at this time, use small bulbils in top-setting types or individual cloves. With the latter, remember that the larger the clove you use, the larger the bulb you’ll also get. However, it’s crucial to plant garlic in areas where you haven’t planted onions to prevent diseases.
When Can You Start Planting In the UK?
While you can start planting garlic in early spring or October, the planting season in the UK can be as early as March. The weather during this month until May is beneficial for most landscape plants because the UK experiences rains. However, this also means some challenges if your area has poor drainage.
Another challenge in spring is the dry conditions, which isn’t feasible for younger plants. The BBC has mentioned that more gardeners are interested in autumn planting during mid-August to mid-October.
The air and soil temperatures and moisture are less harsh and more stable at this period. Still, it would help if you treated planting until November to December with caution because you might encounter problems in root establishment from cold temperatures. You can use the polytunnel at this time to protect crops.
Should I Soak Garlic Before Planting?
A practice that you have probably heard of in garlic planting is soaking them beforehand. A soaking will be beneficial for your crops because it promotes healthy growth. Also, you’re avoiding fungal infections when you soak the cloves before planting.
How Long Does It Take A Garlic To Grow?
It will take up to 40 days for your clove to form a bulb, but different types of garlic also affect the duration of growth. If you plant from October to November, you can expect that garlic is ready by May or June. However, garlic variety and meeting the requirements will factor in this.
Does Garlic Multiply?
Garlic multiplies in the sense that each clove forms a new bulb. This new bulb will consist of up to 10 cloves. This type of vegetative reproduction is similar to potatoes, where you won’t need seeds for the crops to reproduce.
Therefore, the bulb from an individual garlic clove will have cloves with the same genetic makeup.
How Do You Know When Garlic Is Ready To Pick?
You can harvest garlic when 60% of its leaves have turned yellow. The tops are also dry, and this happens seven to eight months after you planted them. Typically, harvesting garlic is in late spring or summer, and most varieties are ready in the middle of July.
Garlic can be a profitable crop, but knowing when to plant garlic in the UK is crucial. The vegetable has condition requirements, and the best yield will happen if you plant in early October. Besides, you can use a polytunnel to protect the crops from extreme temperatures in the UK.
Overall, garlic is ideal for autumn planting to avoid drawbacks in spring and summer. Planting this way will also allow the bulbs to experience 32 to 50°F, which is necessary for growth. It will take 40 days to form a bulb while harvesting after planting usually happens after eight months.