Did you know an indoor garlic garden works all year-round to grow up to twenty times as much garlic as an outdoor garden!
Naturally because you can control the climate inside your home you can grow a garlic plant from fall through spring. If only we could control the weather so easily!
How do you and can you grow garlic indoors?
Garlic can be grown successfully indoors. Each garlic clove, from a whole garlic, can be planted indoors and grown into a full garlic. A garlic clove planted in potting soil, with a little water, will sprout and begin to grow within 30 days. Garlic takes between 6 months to 8 months to grow in full.
You can grow almost every vegetable indoors, from tomatoes and peppers to potatoes and eggplants. But garlic is one of the most popular and easiest vegetables to grow indoors.
Growing Garlic Indoors
Garlic is a great way to enhance your dishes in the kitchen since it can easily be chopped and added to all kinds of sauces and meals.
Garlic has many health benefits, as well as being tasty, so growing it can be a great addition to your home.
We will cover some of these health benefits as well as some top growing tips.
There are many factors that determine success in growing garlic indoors. You can use my own personal experience as a guide.
How to Grow Garlic Indoors – Step by Step Guide
Step 1 – Choose Your Garlic
There are lots of different types of garlic, in fact there are over 700 species of garlic!
Fortunately, all 700 species of garlic are broken down in to just two, more commonly known, types of garlic:
- Hard or Stiffneck
The type of garlic you choose to grow may depend on your location and time of the year. Softneck garlic tends to grow in warmer climates whereas Stiffneck garlic grows in colder climates.
When buying garlic, you may not necessarily know what type you are buying but considering the majority of our homes are warm all year round, it is usually best to choose the Softneck garlic for growing indoors.
Step 2 – Break up your garlic into individual cloves
Once you have your garlic you should peel and split open and separate into the individual cloves of garlic.
Each individual garlic clove will be grown back into a full garlic.
This means buy one garlic and you can grow six garlics from it. Repeat this process just five times from each batch grown and your one individual garlic can be grown into a harvest of 7,776 garlics!
We perhaps will start small and aim to grow six garlics for this example.
Step 3 – Add potting soil to a container – an aluminum tray works just fine
For the garlic clove to sprout and grow a stem, we need to plant it into some potting soil, and for this we need a container.
An aluminum tray used for every day baking will do just fine.
Add a layer of potting soil into the tray so that it is half full.
Step 4 – Plant your garlic cloves
Take each garlic clove and plant it into the soil, so that the area where the stem will grow through (usually a small hollow opening) is facing out of the soil towards the sky.
Each clove should be spaced at least 6 inches apart where possible.
Bed each clove into the potting soil so that it is fairly ridged and unlikely to move if slightly disturbed.
Step 5 – Add Water
Now time to add some water to the soil.
You should keep the soil moist, but do not over water. This can do more harm than good.
Keep watering twice a week on average, or at least when you notice the soil is becoming dry.
Within around 3 weeks to 4 weeks, you should find the garlic has sprouted and grown stems that can be as tall as 14 inches.
Step 6 – Plant each clove stem into an individual pot
At this point its good to separate each garlic into its own individual growing pot. Again, potting soil should be used here.
You should continue to make sure the soil stays moist without being too heavy with water.
This will give you garlic everything it needs to properly form, grow and take shape.
Step 7 – Harvesting your garlic
After 6 months to 8 months, depending on the garlic type and conditions, your garlic should be fully grown, ready for harvest and enjoyed!
You should be able to tell when your garlic is ready to harvest due to the fact the lowest stems and leaves turn a yellow or brown color.
Hopefully you have found this step-by-step garlic growing guide useful but for those who are still unsure, or have questions, you may find this video instruction guide of help:
The Type of Garlic to Grow Indoors
The garlic comes from the onion family, and as we have already seen, it has over 700 species.
But, in the main garlic is split in to two main categories. The Softneck and the Hardneck (or Stiffneck as it is more commonly known).
The Softneck garlic is generally found in warmer climates, and the Stiffneck found in colder climates.
Due to the fact the Stiffneck requires a cold climate to grow, and our indoor gardens are generally far from cold all year round, you may find better success growing the Softneck garlic indoors.
If though the growing environment for your garlic will be relatively cold – such as an indoor space without much heating and in the winter months – the Stiffneck may yield better results for you.
The Hardneck garlic is usually considered more flavorsome, but this is sometimes down to just personal preference. Milder garlic flavor fans prefer the Softneck.
A benefit of growing Softneck garlic indoors is it usually has more cloves per garlic, meaning more growing opportunities.
Caring for Your Garlic Plant
The best conditions, for growing garlic is lots of sun and enough water to keep the soil moist without being too wet or soggy.
For this reason, it is best to avoid potting soil that may retain water.
You should try and position your garlic plant near a south facing window to give it as much sunlight as you possibly can. A windowsill facing south is generally a good location.
Water your garlic plant twice a week. It also doesn’t require any further feeding, although some indoor gardeners do.
Garlic Growing Time
If you decide to grow your own garlic, you will need one thing in abundance. Patience.
The fun thing about growing garlic is how quickly the stem begins to sprout when the clove is planted. You can usually see some results from 2 weeks to 4 weeks, with stems reaching more than 14 inches in length.
This quick initial growth is a great way to introduce children to indoor gardening and growing as you’re not waiting around for months to see anything start to happen.
After the initial excitement of the growth of the stem, you will need to wait a further 6 months to 8 months for your garlic to be fully grown.
This length of growth time is dependent on the type of garlic and the conditions.
Frequently Asked Growing Garlic Questions
Can you grow garlic indoors in winter?
Garlic can be grown indoors in the winter. Softneck garlic is the best type of garlic to be grown in a warm indoor climate year-round. 14 inch stems should sprout within 3 weeks to 4 weeks. Garlic will take between 6 months and 8 months to fully grow indoors.
How do you grow and endless supply of garlic indoors?
Each garlic can be split in to between 6 cloves and 12 cloves. Each garlic clove can be grown into a garlic with a further 6 to 12 cloves. By repeating the growing process with each new garlic, and 6 to 12 cloves, you can grow an endless supply of garlic indoors.
How long does it take for a garlic to grow from a clove indoors?
6 months to 8 months is the average grow time of each garlic grown indoors.
How do I know when indoor grown garlic is ready to be harvested?
As the lower leaves and stem turn yellow and brown the garlic will be ready for harvesting.
Growing garlic indoors is a rewarding hobby for a number of reasons.
Most indoor gardeners tend to keep their garlic in a window box or a sunny spot, and watch it grow and mature.
It’s always fun to stop by to water and check on its growth and give it some much wanted TLC.