We’ve chosen both garlic and overwintering onions from the ‘onion family’ because they play such an essential part in many folks’ daily diets and are straightforward to grow.
Both overwintering onions and garlic require sunny, free-draining soil or they are likely to rot in prolonged wet weather, but they are not shy of the cold. You can grow garlic in pots too.
Plant: September, October
Eat: July, August, Sepember,
Grow: Overwintering onion ‘sets’ (small bulbs), can be bought online or in garden centres from late summer and planted as per instructions.
Follow the planting instructions, garlic- is quite simply one of the easiest things you can try growing- take a clove, plant it and wait! A word of caution- don’t be tempted to stick supermarket garlic into the soil, it will grow, but it won’t thrive. Find a neighbour prepared to get you started from their crop with fat juicy bulbs, or buy special winter garlic for growing. You can slowly start to build your own ‘seed bank’ by replanting your own large, disease-free bulbs from the year before.
Watch as green ‘tops’ peek through from the onion sets. Any soft, green growth can be tempting to birds that can damage or ‘dislodge’ your crop by pulling at the fresh tops. A piece of netting or an old c.d might help deter birds.
It’s worth popping a label in where you have planted garlic as a reminder, shoots appear in the early spring but the garlic won’t be ready until the beginning of July.
Over wintering onions don’t store as well as summer grown sets so these should be eaten first when ready from June onwards.
Every growing space and every season is different and changes how we grow. Grow 6 is a place to start to practice and learn how to grow and adapt to these changes. Along with supporting new growers through regular updates, your tips and experiences are welcome as we all ‘Get Growing’.