Garlic is an easy-to-grow, flavorful bulb vegetable that thrives in many areas of Ohio. Knowing when to plant garlic in Ohio can help you take advantage of the best timing for your region and maximize your crop yield.
Ohio’s USDA Hardiness Zones
Ohio has five different USDA hardiness zones, ranging from 4b in the northern parts of the state to 7a in the south. The hardiness zones refer to the average minimum temperatures of the area, ranging from -25° to 10°F, respectively. When you’re determining when to plant garlic in Ohio, it is important to consider the hardiness zone in which you live.
Additional Resource: Find your growing zone in Ohio
Spring Planting garlic in Ohio
For most of Ohio, the best time to plant garlic is early spring, when the soil has thawed and is workable. Planting in early spring allows the garlic to establish a good root system before the hotter summer months. Aim to plant garlic between the months of April and May in most parts of the state. Place cloves 4-8 inches apart and 2 inches deep, with the wider root side facing down and pointed end facing up. Make sure the rows you plant them in are 6-12 inches apart.
Fall Planting garlic in Ohio
In areas with milder temperatures, such as zones 7a and 6b, garlic can also be planted in the fall. Planting garlic in the fall helps the plants establish a good root system before the cold winter months. Aim to plant garlic in Ohio between the months of September and October. Place cloves 4-8 inches apart and 2 inches deep, with the wider root side facing down and pointed end facing up. Make sure the rows you plant them in are 6-12 inches apart.
When to Harvest
Garlic should be harvested when the lower leaves of the plant have turned yellow and started to die back. To harvest garlic, carefully dig around the plant and loosen the soil. Gently pull the garlic bulb out of the soil and brush off any dirt that may be clinging to it.
How to Care For Garlic Plants
Garlic plants require full-sun exposure, at least 8 hours per day, and soil that is well drained. The soil should also have a pH between 6.0 and 6.8. To ensure adequate nutrition, fertilize the soil with an organic fertilizer before planting. Water the garlic plants regularly and mulch around the plants to help retain moisture.
When planted correctly and cared for properly, garlic can be a delicious and nutritious addition to your garden. By understanding your hardiness zone and when to plant and harvest garlic in Ohio, you will be able to enjoy a successful garlic harvest each season.