The warm fall weather, not my ignorance at all mind you, may have messed up our chances at garlic. I planted at the end of October and we have had spring-like weather from that day on.
To form cloves, garlic must be exposed to temperatures below 41 F (5 C). Thus, if planted too late in the spring, garlic will tend to form large onion-like bulbs instead of individual cloves. In the North, garlic is normally planted in October so that it can establish roots before winter and really take of in the spring. Southern gardeners can only plant garlic if they know the temperature will dip low enough. Often, they can wait until November or December to plant.
This is only our second attempt at growing garlic. The first time it went into the ground at the beginning of May; I guess I now know why that didn’t work out so well. I figured this year we were going to get it right. Maybe I should have paid a bit closer attention to the weather channel my daughter always consults before clothing herself….or maybe I should just ask my daughter :)
We have the garlic planted in one container, another spot by the lavender, and a row by our side fence. I wanted to try a few different locales to see which ones were the most productive, now it may be moot...sigh. At this point I guess only time will tell. It’s so wonderful outside, sunny and warm, that I probably shouldn’t be hoping for a quick drop in temperatures…but I am.