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Garlic second wind

_MH__MH_ Posts: 16
So I planted garlic in Feb/Mar last year and it was an abject failure (yeah i know - who can't grow garlic!?) - wilted and died way before harvest time.  I'm blaming this on too much shade.  What's strange is they then had a resurgence towards the end of the year - fresh shoots which continued over winter and now look like proper garlic plants again! 

My question is whether this is a false dawn and I should just dig them up, throw them away and use the plot for something else or is there a possibility I'll get decent garlic bulbs come August even though they'll have been in the ground 18 months by then?


  • pansyfacepansyface Posts: 21,526
    I can't help you with growing advice, but the title is certainly an eye-catcher...😣
    Apophthegm -  a big word for a small thought.
    If you live in Derbyshire, as I do.
  • SkandiSkandi Posts: 1,618
    When did they wilt last year? It sounds like they simply became ready and then died down as normal. (mine were ready in mid July)
    The plants now, are they single green shoots or are they growing in clusters? If they are single shoots I would leave them and harvest in July. If they are clusters then they did their thing last year and you missed them, you have a couple of choices, pull them now and eat as green garlic, let them go and you get a lot of small deformed bulbs as they are too close together or dig them up and split the clusters up into singles and replant.
    I moved house last year and I THOUGHT I had dug up all my garlic, I went back to the old house last week and I most certainly didn't manage that! there's a couple of rows of nice green clusters coming up. Great as fresh green garlic in a stirfry.
  • I find the best time to plant garlic is September and it usually grows slowly over winter and is ready for the following summer when the leaves start to die back naturally. I think planting in March was too late to get a crop but you could get a crop of small bulbs by letting it regrow again this year and these might be OK to replant but too small for easy use in the kitchen.
  • _MH__MH_ Posts: 16
    Just had a look at what they look like now...It is a fairly solid single green stem (5-10mm diameter) rising up to approx 4 leaves.  The tips of some of these leaves are already going brown, so I suspect the garlic is destined to failure again.  However, I will leave them in and see what I get in July.  Next time I will know to plant in September!  If anyone knows any reliable varieties then let me know :smile:

    Thanks for your help folks!
  • BobTheGardenerBobTheGardener Posts: 11,391
    As it's a single stem, I'd leave it for now and harvest it as soon as the top dies back.  The worst that could happen is it forms a flower and if you don't remove that before it develops, it will flower and put energy into producing seed instead of developing more cloves.  Garlic flowers are very pretty though. :)
    A trowel in the hand is worth a thousand lost under a bush.
  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 28,803
    And you can use the flowers in salads.
    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
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