Frequently Asked Questions

Is your garlic Certified Organic?

All of our garlic is Certified Organic by the WSDA. Currently all of our garlic is grown and certified through our sister company Winniford Family Farm LLC where all the growing happens. As our seed company grows we may choose to bring in other Certified Organic farmers.

When will my garlic ship?

We start shipping in September to our Alaska friends who need to plant early. The rest of the orders go out beginning in October. Orders are fulfilled in the order they are recieved, so the biggest bulbs go to our customers who order earliest.

When should I plant my garlic?

We plant 3-4 weeks after our 1st frost, but any time before the ground freezes will be fine. If you are in a cold climate such as our 5b consider topping with a heavy mulch. We currently use the thickest grade row cover and anchor it with sandbags. Depending on your scale and location other good mulch options include: grass clippings, dried leaves, weed free straw, 2nd or 3rd cutting alfalfa (to avoid weeds), or even using no mulch but planting your garlic deeper (3-4").

How should I care for my garlic for success?

Garlic is a heavy feeder and loves fertility. Plant in full sun and provide plenty of food and water throughout the growing period. Taper water off after scaping to allow the soil to dry at harvest time. NUTRITION: In the Fall, amend the soil with lots of compost and/or plenty of cover crop. In the Spring garlic loves foliar feeding. We alternate our foliar feeds between a liquid fish fertlizer and a home brewed compost tea. In our 5b zone we foliar feed from whenever the garlic is 2-3" (varies greatly year to year) until mid-May.

WATER: Provide about 1" of water each week. Tapering the water off after scapes have been picked. Be careful to avoid too much water near harvest time. SCAPING: Hard neck varieties of garlic will produce a scape. This is an immature flower head that should be removed to encourage bulb growth. Most varieties are harvestd when the scape has made 1 full curl. Scapes are tasty Spring treat. Prepare into a pesto or cook any way you would prepare green beans or asparagus: Roasted, stir fried, grilled, or in soups.

How much garlic do I need?

Generally you can plan for a 1: 4-7 return. So if you plant 1 pound in the Fall, you should harvest 4-7 pounds in the following Summer. Keep in mind that bulbs that have fewer cloves, will produce few bulbs. 1 clove grows into 1 bulb. When planning your planting space, give at least 6" in all directions between bulbs. We like to plant in rows, with approximate 6" between the bulbs and 10-12" between rows. Remember when ordering your garlic that bigger bulbs going into the ground usually gives you bigger bulbs coming out of the ground (if you care for them properly). Order early to ensure you get our best bulbs. Big bulbs go out first, to our customers who ordered first.

When should I harvest my garlic?

After your scapes have been picked your garlic will bulb and mature rapidly. Count the number of leaves on your garlic and havest when approximately 60% of the leaves have turned brown. For example if you count 10 leaves on your garlic plant, harvest when about 6 have turned brown. This is part of the art of growing great garlic. Too long in the ground and your bulb wrappers will split and your garlic will not store for as long. Harvesting to soon and your bulbs will not reach their maximum potential for size. Your day to day weather conditions and the reality of life will dictate much of when you harvest. Going to rain tomorrow? If your garlic is close you will want to harvest before the rain. Going on vacation next week? Don't leave your garlic in the ground if it is close.

What does it mean to "cure" my garlic harvest?

After you harvest your garlic there is another important step before your garlic is ready for storage. You must first allow it to cure, out of direct sunlight in a place with lots of air flow such as an air porch, a cool garage, or an open barn or shed with a fan to encourage air flow. Keep garlic out of direct sunlight. This curing process generally takes 2-4 weeks depending on temperature and humidity levels. When the garlic has fully cured, the top and roots should be trimmed and the dirty outer layers of bulb wrappers should be gently rubbed off. A fully cured and trimmed bulb.

How long will hard neck garlic store for?

Kept cool and in the dark you can expect your properly cured garlic to store for 4-6 months.