Often called Elephant Garlic, this allium is actually not a garlic at all, but actually a leek! Whatever you call it, its enormous 4-5cm cloves are so mild they can be sliced straight into salads and stir fries. Worth growing for the mauve balls of flower alone, this species was popular in rural gardens for it's beauty and flavour.
How to grow garlic: 1 Improve soil prior to planting by incorporating well-rotted compost, manure and organic fertilisers such as rock dust and blood and bone prior to planting. Garlic is a bulb, so good drainage is essential. If your soil becomes damp or waterlogged throughout winter. Mound soil up to improve drainage. 2 Split garlic bulbs into their individual cloves. To ensure the best result, select the plumpest cloves for planting out, leaving smaller cloves for the kitchen. 3 Plant individual cloves, pointy end upward, in holes 5cm deep and 10-12 cm apart. Space rows 15-20cm apart. Gently backfill and water to settle soil in around each clove. 4 Mulch with sugarcane or straw to a depth of 7-10cm. Shoots will push through the mulch so cover the entire area to prevent weed growth during winter. 5 Water as required once shoots are around 10cm tall. Garlic prefers a moist, not wet soil. Apply a liquid fertiliser of seaweed (Granular Seaweed Solution) or fish emulsion (Ocean Brew) fortnightly during the growing season to keep garlic healthy and productive. How to harvest garlic: Garlic is ready to harvest when the leaves begin to dry and there are only 4-5 green leaves remaining. These remaining leaves become the protective skins as cloves dry and harden. Dig up garlic using a fork or trowel to minimise damage to the bulb. Shake to remove loose soil and hang in clumps in a dry, airy place away from direct sunlight for 1-2 months to allow the bulbs to harden.