‘My garlic has flower heads? Should I cut them off?’

Here’s the full question:

I have been following your instructions on the You Tubes for growing garlic and they are looking SO good. However I notice that some of the plants have flower/seed heads appearing.
I thought this was too early as the garlic won’t be harvested until the middle of January. Should I cut them off? Planting the garlic in April has meant the plants are much bigger and I’m looking forward to a good crop but these flower/seed heads are a bother. Can you please give me some advice?

Our response:

With temperatures getting warmer, it’s not uncommon for garlic to produce flower heads. It’s best to break off any flowers or the energy from the plant will go into the flower, not the bulb.
It’s time now to feed up the plants with a nitrogen fertiliser like sheep pellets for the leaves and volcanic rock dust which has a P (phosphorus) of 5 for good bulb growth. We also recommend mulching with something like pea straw or well-rotted sawdust so the soil stays at an even moisture level.
Rather than January, as you mention, you should be able to start harvesting your first bulbs from early December onwards.

One Response

  1. I have been pickling garlic scapes – there are lots of recipes on the web. I tried them at a market in Canada a couple of years ago and they were yummy!

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