How to plant, care for and grow Garlic
|Name derived from||Allium is Latin for garlic|
|Common name||Onion, garlic, shallot, florist allium, leeks and chives|
|Sun Exposure||Full sun and semi-shade.|
|Predators||Whitefly and aphids|
Garlic is a true bulb and its botanical name is Allium sativum. Garlic has been used since before 2 000 BC and was so highly prized that it was used as currency at one point.
This genus is home to onions, shallots, leeks and chives as well as garlic. Garlic can be used to flavor meat and vegetables and its green leaves can be used in a salad. It is said to have many medicinal uses such as: antibacterial, antiviral, antifungal, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory. There are even studies which say that it may provide some protection from cancer and the common cold. It is even said to deter mosquitos. At maturity, it reaches a height of 50cm.
Seasons and planting
Garlic prefers a fertile, well-draining soil and compost should be included in the soil to act as a mulch. It should be planted when the soil has cooled at the beginning of winter. When planting the cloves, ensure that the nose (pointed end) is just below the soil level. A wider distance between the cloves will encourage larger bulbs to form (8 – 20cm). The lowest temperature it can tolerate is -5°C.
Garlic is fairly easy to care for and requires watering once every 3 to 4 days. If the soil is kept wet, the bulb could rot. Bulbs available in food stores are often not good for planting and will not have good results when using them.