When to Plant
Garlic is best planted in the fall (mid-September to mid-October). Planting in warmer climates can be done later and spring planting can be done, but fall planting is highly recommended.
Garlic likes full sun and loose soil with good drainage. Garlic prefers a neutral pH (6.8-7.2). Adding organic matter to the soil is also suggested. Break the bulb into cloves no more than a day or so before planting. Plant clove basal plate side down. Plant cloves 4-6 inches apart and thumb cloves about 1 inch deep into loose soil, rake soil over top of them to cover about 2 inches. Mulch well, at least 2 inches of clean straw, leaves, organic compost, grass clippings, etc. Garlic does not do well in a weedy area and likes even moisture, so mulching will help both of these areas. If you don’t plant on mulching, plant cloves 4 inches deep in colder climates.
One inch of water or rainfall a week is need for optimal growth. Garlic prefers even moisture. Uneven moisture will cause irregular shaped bulbs. Drip irrigation works best for garlic and for water conservation. Stop irrigating 2-4 weeks prior to harvest.