Can I leave my garlic in the ground through the deep freezes that we have here? I planted my garlic in may or june- advise from a book, but it isn't doing very well, would leaving it till next june be a good idea?
I'd guess that it probably would not make it over the winter as a mature plant and that you should pull it out before the worst weather sets in.
You might want to try planting a cold-hardy variety in the fall when people in say, New England or Montana or some other cold winter place plant theirs (right before the first snowfall, for example.)
Read around here after doing a search on the site and you might find some posts that address your needs.
I suggest you dig it up and start over with some new stock. Growing in the extreme cold isn't so much of an issue as long as you plant the cloves so there is like 2" of soil on top the clove and put enough straw on top as insulation. Enough insulation would be at least a foot deep for the kind of cold you guys get over there. you will have much better garlic if you plant in the fall, I would think the first week in October.
Here is a link that might be useful: my page
I've been growing garlic in the cold end of Zone 4 Minnesota for a number of years now. Go online and look for some of the Siberian varieties, do it now! Plant at the end of September or early October. You don't need a foot of straw mulch, 6 inches works fine. Remove the mulch in the spring for a while so your soil warms, just don't do it too early because a really hard frost will set your bulbs back. The new greens handle light frost just fine. After the soil thaws, put the straw mulch back around the young plants to control weeds. Soft neck varieties are harvested around early to mid-July and hard necks are harvested about a month later.
I doubt you guys are limited to "Siberian" varieties. I have many seed bulbs from the high mountains of Montana where it's hits -30. They do just fine. Rocamboles thrive on being in a cold winter environment. Purple stripes and Artichokes do fine in the north also. Creoles don't appreciate being frozen
Thank you. Chris can I ask what area of mn are you in?
There was a fellow who once posted on the GardenWeb, very knowledgeable about garlic and general gardening. IIRC, he lived in your vicinity. Search the site for "Paquebot" and you may get answers to your questions.
For what it's worth I planted a couple of garlic cloves late last summer (probably September). They were just leftover cloves from the grocery store. I didn't mulch or anything, but I planted them in a raised planter where the soil is deep and well worked and the snow gets to be at least 2 feet deep over the winter because of how the wind deflects off of fences and up slopes.
Anyway, our lowest temperature over the winter was -42 (!) yet around early May, there they were, popping up their heads in the sunshine. Amazing.
(Perfect little heads, too - about 1 inch across and beautiful flavour!)
Here ya go Edwena, Maybe you'll think these guys are credible enough.
Here is a link that might be useful: growing garlic in Minnesota
Wow! thank you so much for that link a little more info than I needed but really answered my questions. And bonus- I found local sources to buy garlic for planting.
How late is too late to plant garlic? I live just a bit north of Minneapolis.
It has been a unseasonably warmer this fall than normal(in Iowa at Least) thus planting now should be fine make sure to mulch them.
I am no expert but I planted the very last of mine yesterday and will mulch it today. Last year it was the last day of October and it did well. I am in Southwest Minnesota.