Why is my garlic flopping over?

Asked June 14, 2018, 1:57 PM EDT

I have a 6x6' plot, bulbs 6" apart. I planted the Calif Early (softneck) bulbs in fall and hope to harvest by the Fourth. But 3/5 of plot is flopped over onto the standing 2/5. All foliage is green and, if it were standing, normal height. I dug up a bulb of a flopped-over plant. It is 3/4 expected size and overly "tight." We've had 8" rain in last 3 weeks, but there's no yellowing or apparent rotting of foliage. Plot is on a slight incline and drains well. I've planted garlic in same location since 2015, but have been faithful in soil amendments as suggested by U of Delaware. Sorry I don't have pix; I don't even have a cell phone. What should I do?

Maryland

1 Response

We think the garlic flopping over has to do with all of the rain we've had recently. Our extension specialist on vegetable has had a similar scenario with his garlic -- also grown on a slight slope. You can put stakes at the end of the rows and use string tied to the stakes to prop up the plants until harvest. The important thing is to try to keep them from breaking. We don't think it is a disease or pest issue. It's more likely weather-related.

ckc