Spanish Roja garlic is a gourmet best-selling garlic for home gardens with an excellent classic rich flavor that varies in its outer wrapper color.
Learning Download: How to Grow Garlic
From Seed to Harvest: A guide to growing garlic.
Garlic cloves are used to add flavor to many dishes and carry plenty of health benefits. Garlic naturally repels pests from the garden and can be used for its bulbs or the scapes, or green green fronds, the bulbs produce. Scapes can be eaten fresh or used in various dishes.
Garlic can be planted in the fall up to six weeks before the first hard frost. Though fall planting is recommended, garlic also can be planted int he spring as soon as the ground can be worked. Garlic is suggested to be grown from the bulb, where the cloves are broken apart from the bulb and planted with the pointed end facing up. However, garlic also can be planted from seed though it is much easier to grow from cloves and is rarely ever grown from seed. If planting the cloves, never use cloves from the grocery store. Plant the cloves 2 inches deep and 4 inches apart.
Garlic repels pests from the garden, so it doesn’t have much trouble with them. If planted in the fall, mulch the garlic heavily with straw for overwintering. Remove the mulch in the spring after the last frost. Water every three days once bulbing begins, typically around mid-May. Weed frequently in the spring.
Garlic can take up to 210 days to mature. Harvesting depends on the climate, and garlic is ready for harvest when its tops are yellowing and falling over, but before they completely dry out. In northern climates, fall planting will lead to a harvest in July. In southern climates, it depends on the planting time.
Make sure the bulb wrapper has not disintegrated, and carefully lift the bulbs with a spade or fork. Brush off the soil and let the plants cure in an airy spot for two weeks. You can hang them upside down with a string to cure. The bulbs are cured and ready for storage when the wrappers have a paper-like consistency. The root crown should be hard and dry.
Garlic scapes are ready to harvest as soon as the emerge from the soil, when they are tender enough to eat fresh. As the scapes grow longer, they become tougher. Snip with shears to harvest the scapes without harmer the bulb.
What garlic craves:
Since garlic has such a long growing season, it is a heavy feeder. Upon planting, fertilize with compost, then continue to fertilize the garlic plants in the spring if they were planted in the fall. Fertilize with a side dressing or spread the fertilizer over the entire bed. To side dress the fertilizer, work the fertilizer into the soil about 3 inches from the plant. Garlic requires adequate nitrogen, so fertilize accordingly. Blood meal is a good source of high-nitrogen fertilizer. Once you begin fertilization, fertilize the garlic every three weeks.
Where to buy garlic bulbs:
You can find a large collection of different garlic varieties at Urban Farmer.
Learning Download: Garlic Comparison Chart
Garlic Comparison Chart
|Softneck||California Early||10-16||6-9 months||Moderate|
|Softneck||Red Toch||12-18||8-10 months||Moderate|
|Hardneck||Chesnok Red||6-10||6 months||Moderate|
|Hardneck||Georgian Fire||10-14||4-5 months||Mild|
|Hardneck||German White||4-5||6-7 months||Moderate|
|Hardneck||German Red||10-16||6-7 months||Strong|
|Hardneck||Italian Red||8-10||6-7 months||Mild|
|Hardneck||Spanish Raja||8-12||4-6 months||Strong|