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Gardening in Washington State

When is my garlic ready to harvest?

After the leaves on the lower third of the plant have turned yellow, garlic is ready to harvest. This usually occurs during late June and mid-July depending on the growing climate and the garlic variety planted. Be careful not to damage the bulb during harvest—any wounds or bruises make the bulb more susceptible to disease and deterioration during storage. Use a trowel or spade to gently loosen the soil under the bulb. Remove any soil from the bulb and its roots gently. Place the garlic with the tops intact in a dry, cool, well- ventilated place to cure. Store in mesh bags, braided, or in hanging bunches. After several weeks, the garlic will be cured. To prepare the garlic for use, cut the tops to roughly 1 inch and trim the roots. After curing, the garlic will keep for several months.

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Photo credit: Linda Chalker-Scott

For more information on how to grow garlic in your home garden, see WSU Extension Factsheet FS162E, “Growing Garlic in Home Gardens

Submitted by: Sheila Gray, July 13, 2015

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