Porcelain Garlic Care: How To Grow Porcelain Garlic Plants

Porcelain Garlic Plants
porcelain garlic
(Image credit: F. D. Richards)

What is porcelain garlic and how do you grow it? Porcelain garlic is a type of large, attractive hardneck garlic. The plump cloves, usually four to seven to a bulb, are easy to peel, delicious to eat, and store longer than most types of garlic. Let’s learn how to grow porcelain garlic.

How to Grow Porcelain Garlic

Growing porcelain garlic is basically the same as growing any type of garlic. Porcelain garlic performs well in most climates, with the exception of extremely warm regions such as southern California, Florida, and Texas. It is well suited for cold weather and tends to be larger when grown in chilly northern climates.

Plant porcelain garlic in well-drained soil sometime in the fall (between September and November) when the soil is cool. Before planting, dig in a generous amount of compost or well-rotted manure.

If you want fat, plump garlic, plant the fattest, plumpest porcelain garlic bulbs you can find. Cover the area with 3 to 4 inches (5 to 7.5 cm.) of mulch after the ground freezes. Straw makes a great mulch for porcelain garlic.

As part of your porcelain garlic care, provide about an inch (2.5 cm.) of water per week when bulbs are forming in late spring and early summer. You may not need to irrigate if your climate is rainy in spring. Pull weeds as they appear since these rob nutrients from the bulbs.

Harvest porcelain garlic when the lower leaves start to turn brown.

Porcelain Garlic Varieties

  • German Extra Hardy tends to be disease resistant and is harvested in early to midsummer. This sturdy garlic has a robust, hot flavor.
  • Leningrad matures later than most porcelain garlic varieties. The large bulbs generally have four to six cloves. 
  • Georgia Fire consists of pale, brown cloves streaked with purple. This variety is native to the Republic of Georgia.
  • Armenian is a flavorful, attractive type of porcelain garlic. The white wrappers are marked with a tint of red.
  • Romanian Red is a beautiful garlic with purple-striped wrappers and four to eight cloves per bulb. The flavor is hot and pungent.
  • Georgian Crystal is one of the mildest porcelain garlic varieties, with a flavor that is robust but mellow.
  • Polish Jenn is harvested in early to midsummer. Native to Poland, Polish Jenn is a tall, impressive plant. The flavor of the cloves is rich, deep, and mellow. 
  • Majestic is appreciated for its large bulbs, each with four to seven cloves. The flavor is strong and delicious. 
  • Floha is a versatile garlic native to Germany. It isn’t overly hot and works well for baking. 
  • Dan’s Russian is a moderately hot type of porcelain garlic.
  • Iowa German White is a vigorous variety that produces large bulbs, each with up to seven bulbs. 
  • Music displays more color than most porcelain garlic varieties. The flavor is rich and strong but not overly hot; however, it is sweeter when baked.
  • Rosewood consists of big, beautiful bulbs of soft, pastel colors.
  • Zemo has a strong but pleasant taste. It generally produces four to five cloves per bulb.
Mary H. Dyer

A Credentialed Garden Writer, Mary H. Dyer was with Gardening Know How in the very beginning, publishing articles as early as 2007.