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How to Harvest Garlic

Don't panic when your garlic stalks turn dry and brown: just harvest

Danielle Sherry, Sarah Breckenridge, Gary Junken, Robyn Doyon-Aitken

If you’re concerned that your garlic plants look all but dead, don’t fret. You can start harvesting garlic when about 40% of it has died back and is looking terrible. Even if you’re a bit past 40%, there is still a good chance you can harvest a healthy crop.

The harvesting process is just as easy as growing this plant—you just pull them up. But there is a little more to it because you then have to cure the bulbs. Lay the bulbs out or hang them in small bunches, and allow them to air dry in a cool, dry spot for at least a month. As soon as the tops are completely brown and dried up, you can cut them off, leaving about an inch behind.

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  1. anacortesgardener 08/06/2021

    Pull up? Yikes. I always use a spade fork (plunged in at a safe distance to avoid contacting the bulbs) to loosen the soil and lift them out. After a long stretch without watering after cutting off the hardneck scapes, the soil is generally compacted, and tugging the bulbs out would be a struggle. (Then again, I don't mulch with straw; perhaps that would keep the soil more loose?) I love the results, so maybe it's different strokes for different folks.

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Fruits and Vegetables

Fruits and Vegetables

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