The Garlic Plant
Garlic plants are native to Central America and Asia. They were introduced into Europe in the 1600’s. Today they are grown commercially all over the world.
There are two types of garlic plants, the bulbils and leaves. The bulbsil is used for fresh consumption while the leaves have medicinal uses such as treating skin diseases or even cancer (1).
Bulbils are small, oval shaped flowers which bloom in early summer. They are edible and have been eaten throughout history. However, their use was restricted due to the fact that they produce large quantities of seeds which can cause problems with pollination (2).
In order to prevent these problems, bulbils need to be propagated so that they will not become a problem when consumed. These bulbs are then planted out in rows where they will continue to reproduce until they reach a certain size. This is why it is important to choose the right type of bulb for your needs.
Propagating Garlic From Bulbils
There are several ways that one can propagate garlic from bulbils. One method involves using cuttings taken from the mother plant. Another way involves growing them in soil and transplanting them into pots once they mature (3).
The third and most popular way to grow garlic is by simply placing the bulbils into small pots filled with fertile soil. The pot should have drainage holes to prevent the soil from becoming waterlogged.
Once planted, the bulbils need to be watered and put in a sunny place. Each pot should also have a label placed on it so that you remember what type of garlic it is growing.
It’s important to remember that garlic takes time to grow and that patience is the key. It will take between four to eight weeks for the bulbils to grow into full-sized bulbs which can then be used for consumption. If you want to keep the garlic growing, you will have to carefully dig up the bulbs and plant them again in order for them to continue growing (4).
Why Propagate Garlic From Cloves?
There are many advantages to using bulbils as a method of propagation. The biggest one is that it is easier and cheaper than other means of growing garlic. It is also less time-consuming.
Another benefit is that it allows you to grow hardier plants as it prevents the seeding process from occurring (5).
Propagating garlic from bulbils or cloves is very easy and straightforward. If you want a steady supply of garlic then it is highly recommended that you try this method. The only potential disadvantage is that your crop size will be smaller.
However, if you are looking for a quick and easy way to grow your own garlic then this is a great one to use.
If you want to learn more about how to grow garlic or other types of herbs at home then the best resource is going to be books. While the internet is a good source of general information, it isn’t always the best place to find more detailed and specific instructions. Books allow you to have a physical copy which you can keep for future reference.
The popular book “Small Scale Livestock Farming”, by Joel Salatin is an excellent resource if you want to learn more about how to raise different types of livestock including chickens, ducks, rabbits and goats. The book also has detailed instructions on how to grow fruits and vegetables in your backyard.
You can find the book on Amazon by following this link: Growing Fruits And Vegetables On A Small Scale .
This book is very easy to read and understand even for beginners. The book has a number of positive reviews on Amazon with many people noting just how much they learned from it. Other than the cost of buying the book, the information contained inside is completely free.
If you want information about how to grow garlic specifically, then the book “Growing Great Garlic” by Chuck Kauffman is an excellent resource. Like the title suggests, it only focuses on growing garlic and has information about general growing principles as well as specific tips and tricks.
You can find the book on Amazon by following this link: Growing Great Garlic .
This book also has a number of positive reviews and is another easy to read resource for your library.
Both of these books are valuable resources that you can keep forever and refer back to when you need help. If you want to save yourself time and money while increasing the quality of the food you grow, then I highly recommend picking up a copy.
If you are just getting started with growing your own food, then the best advice I can give is to start small and gradually work your way up. Growing a successful vegetable garden takes time, patience and a lot of hard work.
Eager gardeners often make the mistake of over-extending themselves by trying to grow too much at once. This leads to many of their crops failing which can be very discouraging. Pick a small number of vegetables that you like and want to eat regularly and focus on those.
For example, pick one of the following:
Pick varieties that suit your growing conditions (in other words, pick the ones that grow well in your local area). Find out which ones are the most nutritious and try to pick a balanced selection.
If you want to grow fruit, I would recommend growing these instead:
Citrus (oranges, for example)
Again, focus on growing a small number of types. If you decide to grow more than one type of fruit tree, try to keep it to just two or three varieties maximum.
If you want to eat a variety of homegrown produce throughout the whole year then you might want to consider having a greenhouse or hoop house. These are great for extending the growing season and can be used for starting seeds early.
Above all else, preparation is key. You will get the best results if you plan ahead and give your plants all the resources they need to thrive. This means spending some time in the fall to prepare your garden for the following growing season.
So, What Can You Expect From Growing Your Own Food?
The amount of food you will have available to you is only limited by how much time, effort and money you want to put into your garden. Even if you just grow a few pots of herbs on your porch, you will save money and have fresh ingredients for your favorite recipes.
You can expect nutritious, delicious food that is free of harmful chemicals. There is no comparison between the flavor of freshly picked produce and the bland, pale looking produce you buy at the store.
When you pick your vegetables at the peak of ripeness, it is a very rewarding experience. You can enjoy foods that are far superior to what you get in the supermarket.
Your garden can become a place of peace and tranquility. Growing your own food connects you with nature in a way that few people experience nowadays. You realize that your food doesn’t come from a big box store or a drive-thru window, it comes from the earth and the work you put in to take care of it.
Food can be a very powerful tool. Growing your own food is one of the best ways to take power back from the corporations that profit by controlling the food supply. By growing some of your own food, you no longer are completely at their mercy.
You become less dependent on them and more independent.
The time, money and effort you invest now will be paid back many times over by the food you grow now and for years to come.
Return from Growing Your Own Food to A Self Sustaining Lifestyle
Return to The Modern Survivalist’s Home Page
Sources & references used in this article:
Garlic productivity and profitability as affected by seed clove size, planting density and planting method by JZ Castellanos, P Vargas-Tapia, JL Ojodeagua… – …, 2004 – journals.ashs.org
… AND BULBING OF GARLIC (ALLIUM SATIcVUM 1.) IN RESPONSE TO STORAGE TEMPERATURE OF PLANTING STOCKS, DAY LENGTH, AND PLANTING … by LK MANN, PA Minges – 1958 – coststudyfiles.ucdavis.edu
Low-temperature storage of garlic for spring planting by GM Volk, KE Rotindo, W Lyons – HortScience, 2004 – journals.ashs.org
Implementation of garlic cryopreservation techniques in the national plant germplasm system by D Ellis, D Skogerboe, C Andre, B Hellier, G Volk – CryoLetters, 2006 – ingentaconnect.com
Growing garlic in Minnesota by C Rosen, R Becker, VA Fritz, B Hutchinson, J Percich… – 2016 – conservancy.umn.edu