How To Plant Garlic Using an Electric Drill. Easy, quick and fun!

Garlic planting with drill2 title and watermarked

I like power tools.  I don’t have my own but my husband has lots, and when I do get my hands on them, I get that glazed over look in my eyes and rev the engine.  There is something about holding an electric drill up on your shoulder and squeezing the trigger.  I feel POWERFUL!  I feel STRONG!  I feel like we can do this, sistas!  Maybe if I had had the ingenuity to take shop class in high school instead of home ec I would have less of the glazed look and more skill to show for it.  That said, I have discovered a new use for the electric drill.

In 2013 I bought some lovely big, local garlic bulbs to plant.  They were horrifyingly expensive, but I figured that I could collect half the harvest and save seeds for next year.  I planted them in December (our soil doesn’t freeze much where we live) and the following summer I had a bountiful crop of beautiful, delicious garlic.  I ended up with 60+ heads of garlic.  I saved the best half for seed garlic, and we used the other half.

This time when I planted my garlic I had 30 heads, which resulted in 142 cloves of garlic.  That’s a lot of digging, especially in winter, in our cold, clay soil.  My friend Bruce shared his solution!  It is so simple it floored me.  A drill!!  A cordless drill with a large bit on the end.  I could tell you in words how well it worked, but instead I took a video.  Its only a few seconds long: check it out!!

Tips for planting garlic:

  • Garlic prefer well-drained, loamy soil although they will grow in other types of soil.
  • Garlic like to be fertilized.  Before you plant them add some compost or manure to the garden.
  • Don’t plant in an area where they will sit in water at any time during the winter.
  • Plant garlic 4-8 inches apart and about 3 inches deep, pointy end up.
  • You can mulch your garlic to prevent weed growth, with a thick layer of staw, hay, leaves or grass clippings over the winter.  Make sure to thin it to about 2  inches deep in the spring to ensure the garlic will come through the mulch.
  • Don’t forget the scapes!  Hard neck garlic will produce long garlic scapes that should be removed to prevent the garlic from getting woody.  Chop and use as you would garlic or onions, in stir fries, omelets or ???  Delicious!
  • Garlic needs a cold period of time in the winter so make sure you get your garlic in 3 weeks before the ground freezes for the winter.  To prepare your garlic for planting let them sit in a cool area (7-10C) for 3 weeks before planting.

For more tips and information on growing, harvesting and collecting seed garlic, click here.

 

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