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OK if garlic planting in bed after potatos?

 
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Got a big potato bed I can rework and plant garlic there. There are other places I can plant it but the potato bed is already cleared. So is it an OK idea if not a good idea? Like should i be dissuaded?   Thanks, Ogre Nick
 
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Hmm, I don't know of a reason not to follow potatoes with garlic.  I tend to follow crops that I can pull out early enough in the fall to allow for the garlic planting (NOT squash, carrots, beets, kale for example).
 
Nick Dimitri
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Thanks, a consideration for me too, as I'm in zone 5, so close enuf to be not much different. It was just that I heard potatoes can spread disease. People say that kind of thing often. I tend to dismiss such talk, but should I?
 
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I just did exactly the same as you Nick. I harvested my potatoes on Saturday and planted garlic on Sunday.  I dont see any reason why not.  I highly doubt any pest of potatoes would find garlic appetizing.  I believe garlic is a natural fumigant that tends to kill off any bad pests and parasites.  Hence it use to ward off vampires!
 
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The only downside of planting garlic after your potatoes is that you have to be absolutely certain that you have lifted every single potato at harvest time or else they will all sprout in your garlic bed 😉 the potatoes will outgrow the garlic so need to be pulled up as soon as they emerge. As you can see, i am not a very tidy gardener - I have lots of potato weeds in my garlic bed 🤣
garlic-bed.jpg
garlic bed
garlic bed
potato-weeds.jpg
potato weeds
potato weeds
 
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Nick Dimitri wrote:Got a big potato bed I can rework and plant garlic there. There are other places I can plant it but the potato bed is already cleared. So is it an OK idea if not a good idea? Like should i be dissuaded?   Thanks, Ogre Nick



It shouldn't be a problem - different families so no obvious disease issue. (Potato from Solanaceae, Garlic from Amaryllidaceae)

However, potatoes are heavy potassium/phosphorus/nitrogen feeders, so you'll probably need to replenish these elements. Though, nitrogen sources like manure, etc shouldn't be given after bulb formation = lots of green tops, small bulbs, shorter storage life. Also, garlic like 5.5 to 7 pH.

Enjoy!

 
Nick Dimitri
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Much thanks for the replies -- very helpful, the lot of you. Will try to adequately dress and plant tomorrow.  
 
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I do hope you got all the potatoes out, though, Nick, or are prepared to treat potato volunteers either as weeds, or be willing to transplant them early.

I haven't sat down to figure this one out, because honestly, I like to think about garlic as a necessary crop that is also a handy fumigant, as mentioned above. If you disperse your garlic plantings, their fumigant and scent distractant properties benefit everything around them, but it complicates tending and harvest, though not so much if the complimentary plantings are similarly timed.

As to potatoes spreading disease, everything that I have ever read and learned on the matter has led me to form the strong opinion that that's not quite accurate, or at least not that simple.

Potatoes can have issues with disease, true, and there hasn't been much genetic diversity in potatoes, which means that they all share similar weaknesses, so when one potato catches something, it's unlikely the others will have an immunity. But even if your potatoes were diseased, those diseases would affect solanaceae relatives. So no tomatoes, eggplant, datura, basically no nightshades at all.

But if you get rid of all potentially affected biomass, like the dead plants and leaves, down to the roots, and if you brew up a good actively aerated compost extract and treat the area with appropriate fungal slurries, you can build up the good soil life that crowds out and out-competes the pathogens. While this is great for the soil and will let you return to the former crop sooner, all you really need to do is switch to a crop that doesn't host the disease in question, and, like garlic, perhaps has fumigative properties.

Let us know how it goes, though, and good luck.

-CK
 
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