If you have planted garlic in this fall season in your vegetable garden and your area is facing extremes of hot and cold weather conditions then moderating soil temperature is quite helpful. For Garlic plants repeated freezing and thawing is not good. Frost heaves can tear the young roots from the cloves.

Frost heave is the result of pressure created from a combination of freezing temperatures and soil defrosting. The fluctuating freezing and thawing conditions heave, or lift, the soil, which is often characterized by deep cracking of the soil.

In extreme weather conditions leading to freezing ensure that your garlic plants are not uprooted from the ground otherwise this would become a major cause of worry for you. 

You could lose your entire garlic crop or it could be damaged severely. Plants can quickly dry out and die once their roots have become exposed to cold temperatures. A thick layer of winter mulch is a good insurance against frost heave.

Garlic does not like extreme heat either, and mulch will moderate the daily fluctuations in summer soil temperatures

Fall-planted garlic is commonly mulched to protect it from desiccation and to prevent the freeze-thaw-freeze period in early spring. The mulch keeps the warming soil at a uniform temperature, and that is done via air pockets in it, which is why chopped straw is the best to use. It’s hollow and serves as a barrier both for heat loss and cold penetration.

It is also a good idea to use chopped-up leaves or grass clippings to save your fall-planted-garlic-plants. Solid mats of flat leaves or paper won’t do, since they will conduct both the heat and cold.

Almost 4 inches of chopped mulch in the fall for winter protection so that by spring this will have settled to 2 inches, which is enough for weed suppression and heat and moisture control.

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