The Garden Community for Garden Lovers



By Learner

Kent, United Kingdom Gb

Please can somebody help me to tell when garlic is ready, without stating the obvious, pull it up.



First of all- don't "pull it up" - please be gentle - It will bruise otherwise! Seriously though - you can poke around the bulb and see if it is big enough and then check to see if the leaves have started to turn colour - yellowish brown. If that all seems right - ease the bulb out of the ground by digging it up gently. Then hang it up somewhere dark and dry - not in the sunshine or it will "burn" and be useless. Once it has developed the classic papery outer can string them all up and make the classic rope of them. Depending where you are - I would say you could start harvesting any day now - depending on the variety. Happy harvesting!

31 Jul, 2009


I usually harvest mine when the top growth has died down, usually in July or early August. The only problem is that if left too late you can forget where they were. dig them up. Surprised at Al's advice as everyone dries them in the sunshine on the surface of the soil here and we don't have any problem. A French guy told me a few days ago to pull all the outside parchment away from the cluster of cloves to ensure total drying before storage.
Don't forget to keep some of the best cloves, the ones on the outside of the bulb, to re-plant in October or November as this is the best time for the largest bulbs next year.

31 Jul, 2009


How interesting Bertiefox...I've always gone by my Grandfather telling me when I was a kid ...."garlic in the dark and onions in the sun"
That must have been a Nottingham trick - way back in time! I must try your never stop learning ...that's for sure - and especially on Goy !! Thanks for that.

31 Jul, 2009


I guess the difference is that here in France you can expect prolonged spells of warm dry weather, while in the UK it's more likely to be wet, and then sunny. So your grandfather's advice is probably best, Alz., as wet and then dry will probably rot the bulbs.
What I do is dry them for a week on a wooden picnic table and a stone slab, and then I put them in the barn, which is really the 'dark and dry' bit.
I guess it depends a lot on the condition of the bulbs when they come out of the soil and how dry they are at that stage.

1 Aug, 2009


Good thinking Bertiefox and you are probably right. I try to pick a nice sunny day - then I just sling my onions over the clothes rope - two by two....and do ditto in the garage with the garlic onto the beams...beside the pheasants...oooh..doesn't that sound tasty! Having never shot anything in my life - they are gifts - needless to say!

2 Aug, 2009

How do I say thanks?

Answer question

Related photos

  • garlic
  • garlic in my veg patch...
  • garlic
  • Garlic Chives (Allium tuberosum (Garlic chives))

Related blogs

Related products


Related questions

Not found an answer?