Should I harvest garlic before the upcoming storm?

Asked June 16, 2020, 3:55 AM EDT

I harvested scapes from my hard neck garlic 10 days ago and it looked like people online were saying to pull the bulbs up around 21 days after cutting the scapes. Many plants have 10-30% brown leaves and digging around a bulb or two showed they could use a little bit more time. The forecast is calling for at least 9 straight days of rain starting tomorrow. Are the bulbs at risk of splitting? Should I harvest sooner rather than later?

Baltimore County Maryland

1 Response

Hi- this is a judgement call on your part. Clove separation occurs when full-sized bulbs are left in the ground. The safest thing to do is harvest all plants with top-growth that is starting to die back.

You could leave plants that are under-sized with healthy green top growth but saturated soils from extended rainy, overcast days could lead to disease issues.