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How to tell when Garlic is ready to harvest?

I planted the cloves last October, so they have been growing for about 10 months.. The green stalks/stems have now developed what look like swells or buds a few inches from the end of the stalks. I am guessing that these are flower buds, but as they are not on the very end of the stalks I can not be sure. Is this stage the time to harvest, and if not, how much longer do I need to wait?




  • WelshonionWelshonion Posts: 3,114

    I would stop buying garlic and when you need some dig up a plant.  You will soon see if the garlic is ready.

  • FleurisaFleurisa Posts: 779

    It sounds like you're growing a hardneck variety and they have put up what are called 'scapes' which are the flower buds, you can cut these off and use them in cooking

  • davids10davids10 Posts: 894

    when the tops fall over

  • Mel McbrideMel Mcbride Posts: 112

    I don't have the answers, but I can compare mine to yours, it may help, or not I know know.

    I put my garlic in about that time too, last year. Mines just regular garlic, it came from the supermarket and began sprouted in the kitchen, so I buried it~

    The stems came up around February, and have been quite tall since late March. Right now, the bulbs are about the size of a ping-pong ball, they're white and purple-ish and haven't formed the outer skin, but there are individual cloves. I only know this because I carefully pull the soil out the way to see them now and then.

    I had been told, I could be harvesting them as early as May, in May there were TINY.. I've since been told they're usually ready around July/august. -- I'm not holding my breath tho!

  • Steve 309Steve 309 Posts: 2,753

    I had to dig up some last week as they had rust.  Planted in October I think and the bulbs were also about ping-pong ball sized.  I guess they're day-length-dependent like onions are so might be properly ready soon?

    There was another thread abou this a week or three ago.

  • Steve 309Steve 309 Posts: 2,753

    Yep - that's the one, Edd.  Someone added that it's shallots, not garlic, which are planted on the shortest day and harvested on the longest - but I have my doubts about the wisdom of that as well.

    The second row have rust now so they'll have to come out too. image

  • I harvested mine about a week ago, here is the vid of me harvesting.


    there is a link to the second part at the end, and the beginning.

    Feel free to click like, comment or even subscribe for more of my gardening videos.

  • ClaringtonClarington Posts: 4,949

    No fancy web videos here but this is what I pulled up last night: bit of a range in size and the onion is one seedling / bulb that spilt in two hence looking a bit on the small size.


  • ClaringtonClarington Posts: 4,949

    The two small garlics were ones that had split off a larger bulb and haven't divide themselves. Still should be a nice addition to a meal sometime! image

  • I also have another video of me harvesting my elephant garlic if you would like to check it out?


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