Garlic is one of the easiest plants that I grow in my vegetable garden and fall is the perfect season for planting this no fuss crop. Planting at the end of September in the Northeast works well as the garlic has a month or two of cool weather growth to establish roots prior to going dormant. Before you purchase your garlic bulbs, work some compost into the soil of the garden bed.
Once you bring home the bulbs, separate them into individual cloves – do not remove the papery skin. Remember, each clove will grow into an entire head of garlic. Plant the individual cloves pointy side up, 2” deep and about 3-4” apart. Apply a layer of mulch. Occasionally, with a warm fall or a prolonged winter thaw, some green shoots will poke up. Even if those sprouts are covered by snow, your garlic will be fine!
Garlic will be among the earliest plants that come up in the spring and will have required very little effort on your part to ensure a successful harvest by early summer.