Like it or hate it Garlic is among one of the healthiest vegetables that we can consume. Garlic is an excellent source of manganese and vitamin B6, a very good source of vitamin C and a good source of selenium. Garlic also contains sulfur and sulfur itself is a key part of our health. Add up all the health benefits of Garlic and you will see why it deserves a place in you garden.
The other thing Garlic has going for it is that it is very easy to grow. Here on our farm in Georgia we plant Garlic in October by placing the separated cloves in the ground 2 to 3 inches deep and 4 inches apart in the row. Be sure to plant with the pointed end up. I have grown them in a square foot garden as well as containers. Garlic needs a long time to grow and will stay in the garden from fall until late spring or early summer the following year. I have found garlic to be a very hardy crop and it overwinters in the garden just fine.
We always plant into a well drained soil rich in organic matter and supply extra organic fertilizer in the form of pelleted chicken manure, 3- 2-3 applied at the rate of about 10 to 15 pounds per 100 square feet at or before planting, In late February when shoots are 4 to 6 inches tall apply organic feather meal 9-0-0 at about 5 pounds per 100 square feet and again 4 to 6 weeks later as bulbs are expanding.
Garlic will sprout soon after you plant it and at that time we pull out any weeds and start applying a mulch of shredded leaves to discourage weeds. I have not found it necessary to cover garlic with a cloth to protect it in the winter but in a container that may be necessary because the roots are more exposed to the elements. Because you are growing garlic a time of year when it is cooler and the soil stays more moist you will usually not have to water very much . Just be sure to water in after planting and during times with little rainfall.
There are few pest that attack garlic but we always follow a 4 year rotation so that they are not planted in the same place every year. This helps to avoid some pests that eat into the bulb.
If you would like to dig deeper into Growing garlic I would suggest a University of Georgia publication by Wayne J. McLaurin on growing garlic in Georgia.
You can also read more about the health benefits of garlic at the website Worlds Healthiest Foods.