garlic question

Allan Balliett igg at igg.com
Tue Jul 16 02:04:59 EDT 2002


>Does anyone use plastic mulch for garlic?  I have used straw in the past,
>pulling it off in March and then cultivating several times.  I thought about
>planting on 6 inch to 8 inch squares on a 24 inch wide raised bed covered
>with black plastic.  Will I have a problem with heaving?  Last November it
>was very dry when we planted and that was the only time I have ever irrigated
>garlic.  Is there a problem with  water (t-tape) under the plastic with
>garlic?   Thanks for your advice and experiences.
>
>Ben in Maryland

Ben - I use straw on my garlic for thermal insulation, for blocking 
light (to promote root growth in the fall), and for moisture 
retention. The straw also blocks weeds. I would feel that black 
plastic wouldn't contribute much to those needs/functions.

I'm in northern Virginia. I'm digging garlic right now. This is the 
first year that the soil under the mulch has been DUST DRY. The 
garlic has not - - apparently - - suffered, but it would have been 
better to have watered a few times, I'm sure.

Incidentally, unlike many, I leave my straw mulch on all summer. (I 
do not rake it off as the soil warms.)

Again, I'm pretty happy with the garlic that I grow.

-Allan



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