How to grow and maintain a harvest of garlic

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Garlic is one of the most unpretentious crops, which is grown in almost every vegetable garden and personal plot. However, in order to obtain a good quality harvest, it is necessary to adhere to certain agricultural techniques and choose the right varieties, which will be discussed in this article..

How to properly grow and maintain the harvest of garlic

Garlic is a perennial herb of the onion family. Scientists consider the birthplace of this culture to be Central Asia, namely the territories of Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Tajikistan, as well as Iran and Afghanistan – experts have proved that modern garlic originated from a long-pointed onion, which can be found in large quantities in the mountains at the bottom of the gorges.

Today, garlic is one of the most popular spices and is used to prepare all kinds of dishes in the cuisines of different nations of the world. Due to the presence in the composition of a large amount of nutrients, this popular vegetable crop is of great importance in human nutrition. Garlic is widely used both in cooking and in folk medicine to treat many dangerous diseases. These useful qualities and unpretentiousness when growing make garlic especially popular among gardeners. In order to get a high-quality harvest of garlic, it is important to follow a number of simple rules and choose the right variety that is right for your conditions..

Garlic varieties

Most vegetable growers, when planting garlic, do not think about what variety they have, but plant cloves from independently grown local varieties of culture that are not known to anyone, and the harvest is usually good. However, today there are specially developed selection varieties of garlic, which are distinguished by increased productivity and excellent keeping quality. When choosing a particular variety, two parameters must be taken into account – garlic is winter and spring, as well as arrow and non-arrow.

How to properly grow and maintain the harvest of garlic

The easiest way to grow winter varieties, they always give good yields with a large bulb and large teeth. Spring garlic planted in the fall without special care and control can simply freeze out. It should be planted outdoors in early spring. Winter varieties, in most cases, are arrow-shaped, and spring varieties are stemless or non-arrowed.

The most common varieties of garlic today are:

  1. Bashkir-85 is an early-ripening winter shooting variety characterized by bulbs weighing about 60 grams, which are covered with dense multilayer scales.
  2. Gribovskiy jubilee is a winter shooting variety of garlic. Gives round-flat bulbs weighing 20-30 grams, excellent winter hardiness and high adaptability to various adverse conditions.
  3. Petrovsky is a winter shooter variety, the bulbs weigh 70–80 grams, the scales are off-white with dark purple longitudinal veins. This variety is characterized by increased resistance to diseases..
  4. Gulliver is a spring shooter variety characterized by excellent keeping quality. A bulb weighing 90-120 grams is covered with dry scales of a dirty gray color.
  5. Leningradsky is a spring non-shooting early maturing variety. Yields bulbs weighing up to 40 grams. Keeps well and adapts well to adverse conditions.
  6. Aleisky is a non-shooting spring high-yielding variety. Bulbs weighing 30-40 grams ripen together, they are perfectly stored in winter.

Distinguish between spicy and sweet varieties of garlic. Spicy ones tend to grow in northern and middle latitudes, while sweet ones are most often found in the south. Sweet garlic has a delicate aroma and does not have the pungency that is characteristic of spicy varieties.

How to properly grow and maintain the harvest of garlic

Despite its unpretentiousness, this culture does not adapt well to the new ecological situation, therefore, it is recommended to grow local varieties in each region, for more information about which you can find out in specialized stores or from people who grow garlic professionally.

Agrotechnics of growing garlic

To obtain a good harvest of garlic, it is recommended to use highly productive varieties and create optimal conditions for the growth of this crop..

Garlic is planted in areas where melt water does not accumulate in spring. The planting time for winter varieties is from September 20 to October 20. Spring garlic is planted in February windows or early spring (before April 1). This crop prefers well-structured soil rich in organic matter, therefore humus or compost must be added to the soil before planting (bucket per square meter).

The best predecessors of garlic are legumes, cabbage, and cucumbers. It will grow poorly after potatoes and onions. When planting garlic, it is important to observe the main condition – the garlic is returned to its original place not earlier than after 3-4 years, in order to avoid the accumulation of pests and pathogenic fungi in this place.

How to properly grow and maintain the harvest of garlic

Before planting, the heads are disassembled into cloves and dipped for several minutes in a weak solution of sodium chloride. For planting, you can use only healthy strong cloves from the bulbs of the last harvest. The optimal row spacing for winter crop varieties is 40–45 cm; between the cloves, it is necessary to leave 8–10 cm and deepen them by six to eight centimeters. Spring garlic is planted with a row spacing of 25–30 cm, the cloves are buried by 5–6 cm. After planting, if necessary, the beds are watered and mulched with humus or peat..

Garlic is a cold-resistant plant, its roots germinate at a temperature of 2-3 degrees, and at 7-8 degrees air bulbs are already beginning to develop. This culture is not afraid of spring frosts. The optimum temperature for the initial stages of growth is considered to be 10-15 degrees, during the ripening period – 20-25.

The need for water for garlic is important during the period of bulb formation, since the root system at this time is already well developed, but is located in the upper layer of the soil. If there is a lack of moisture during development, the heads may dry out immature. But already by the time the leaves dry up, the need for water is greatly reduced, on the contrary, in dry air, the ripening of the heads even accelerates.

How to properly grow and maintain the harvest of garlic

In terms of light, garlic is not too whimsical, but it does not tolerate shade well. With strong light, the plant ripens faster, but the yield decreases..

With prolonged reproduction only by teeth, diseases accumulate in the plant, and the variety degenerates. For the annual renewal of the planting material, it is recommended to plant several rows of bulbs, from which the one-tooth will grow next year. Full-fledged heads are subsequently obtained from the one-tooth.

How to properly grow and maintain the harvest of garlic

To obtain the bulbs, the best looking plants are chosen, in which the flower arrows do not break out. The seeds are considered ready when the bud wrapper bursts, after which they need to be cut along with the stem and dried. Sow the bulbs at the same time as the cloves at a rate of 100 grams per 1 square meter. Sowing bulbs rejuvenates garlic, increases its yield and resistance to diseases.

Diseases and pests of garlic

In most cases, pests and pathogens I avoid garlic beds, the phytoncides of this culture are destructive for them. Garlic in organic farming is actively used to protect other crops. You can read more about this in the article “Organic farming. Biological protection against pests and diseases ”. However, there are persistent pests and fungi, which, with their large accumulation, still infect garlic plants..

How to properly grow and maintain the harvest of garlic

The most dangerous for culture is the stem nematode. These small, whitish filamentous worms can cause great harm to crops. The larvae and adults of this pest feed on garlic juice, causing curvature of the stem and damage to the bulb, and stunting. The heads damaged by the nematode have loose internal tissues, juicy scales do not fit tightly to each other. The main way to combat this pest is to disinfect the seed in a solution of sodium chloride or in water heated to 45-50 degrees for 10-15 minutes. To avoid infection, crop rotation should be strictly observed and the garlic should not be returned to the same place for 3-4 years.

The onion lurker infects the leaves of garlic. The pest is a black beetle 2–3 mm long. Adult beetles and their larvae eat cavities in the leaves, as a result of which round white spots are formed on them, the leaves turn yellow, and the tops of the garlic dry out. In case of a large accumulation of pests, it is recommended to pollinate the garlic beds with wood ash, ground red or black pepper or dry mustard.

The most dangerous diseases are onion and garlic mosaic and fusarium. Mosaic is a viral disease that affects the inflorescences and leaves of a plant. The disease manifests itself in the form of elongated small specks or in the form of light green stripes on the leaves. The arrows of the garlic bend, the inflorescences become loose, the flowers give very few seeds, the germination of which is greatly reduced. The main measures for combating garlic mosaic are the use of healthy seed, maintaining crop rotation and removing infected plants at an early stage of the disease..

How to properly grow and maintain the harvest of garlic

Fusarium is a dangerous fungal disease that manifests itself during the ripening of the heads of garlic. In infected plants, leaves die off rapidly, most of the roots rot. With Fusarium, a trace of yellow, pink or whitish mycelium is clearly visible on the bulbs. Its clusters are clearly visible between the scales. This disease most often develops when there is heat and an elevated soil temperature during the ripening period of garlic. Prevention of fusarium disease is crop rotation and the use of uninfected strong cloves for planting, as well as proper storage of garlic in winter.

How to store garlic properly

In order for the garlic to be well stored throughout the winter, not to blacken and dry out, it must be properly prepared. Firstly, the garlic is perfectly preserved, which is dug out on time and well dried. It is necessary to dig out garlic on a sunny dry day, in winter – in early August, in spring – 2–2.5 weeks after winter varieties. The main sign that it is time to harvest are yellowed and two-thirds dry leaves. The garlic needs to be dug, peeled from the ground and dried well in the shade..

How to properly grow and maintain the harvest of garlic

There are many ways to store garlic. The crop that you plan to use in the near future can be braided and hung somewhere in the kitchen..

How to properly grow and maintain the harvest of garlic

One of the safest ways is to store garlic in common table salt. For this, small plywood boxes are used, on the bottom of which a layer of salt is poured, a layer of garlic on it – and so on to the very top. It is advisable to put no more than 4–5 layers, the last layer of salt should be at least 3–4 cm thick. With this method of storage, the garlic is not darker and does not dry out, salt does not allow fungal diseases to develop. In the same way, you can preserve garlic by sprinkling it with wood ash or sawdust..

You can use nylon socks or tights to store garlic. Dried heads are placed in them and hung in a cool, dry, well-ventilated place..

You can save garlic until spring by burying it in the ground. To do this, choose heads of excellent quality, put them in a plastic bag (in one bag no more than a kilogram), and tie them tightly. In the garden, they dig a hole up to half a meter deep, wrap bags of garlic with paper or newspapers, put them in the hole and cover them with earth. It will be good if you put a thick layer of dry leaves on top, and in winter, make sure that there is more snow in this place. Dug up bags of garlic in the spring and use as directed.

You can use the following method for storage: peel the cloves from the husk, place them in a glass jar, pour over refined vegetable oil, close tightly with a plastic lid and refrigerate. Thus, you will have ready-made peeled garlic and aromatic oil for making all kinds of salads..

How to properly grow and maintain the harvest of garlic

It is better to store garlic separately from other vegetables, because they give off a lot of heat and moisture. It should be noted that non-shooting spring varieties survive better than winter arrow-growing varieties. The optimum temperature for storing spring varieties is from 0 to plus 3 degrees, winter crops – from minus 3 to plus 1. At the same time, it is advisable to maintain humidity at a level not higher than 70-75 percent.

So, we figured out that growing garlic is quite simple, the main thing is to choose the right variety and adhere to the crop rotation. By following these simple rules and choosing a convenient storage method for you, you will provide your family not only with a spicy aromatic seasoning, but also with a wonderful medicine for the prevention and treatment of many serious diseases..

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