Common Garlic: White or Mexican (early but does not store well and has poorer quality).
Pink or Italian: (later - lower yield then earlier but stores better.)
Seed Viability (Years)
Not generally planted from seed.
Not generally planted from seed
Garlic is generally not grown in the backyard garden from seed. Coves and top sets are used, but cloves are more common. The bulbs or cloves used for planting are available from local garden centers or can be ordered from catalogs. The garlic bulbs available from the grocery store produce department can also be planted. Unlike onions which have round, tubular leaves, garlic produces long, flat leaf blades.
Garlic prefers rich, loose, well-drained soil. It requires adequate nutrients, so mix the fertilizer into the soil prior to planting. Raised beds make an ideal place to grow these bulbs. Garlic should be grown in full sunlight and weeded regularly. Competing weeds should be removed promptly or the size of the garlic will be greatly diminished. Their shallow root systems are easily damaged by cultivation, so mulch them freely to assist in controlling weeds.
When planting, separate the bulbs carefully, discard smaller cloves and plant only the larger ones. The cloves should be planted at least two inches beneath the soil surface. Planting direction is not critical since the original clove disintegrates as the new plant emerges. Each plant should grow close together, three to four inches apart, in rows six to eight inches apart. Elephant garlic requires almost twice that spacing.
Like onions, garlic develops a shallow root system that does not compete well with other garden plants. Garlic should be watered regularly and kept free from weeds.