How Many Cloves In A Head of Garlic? Can You Distinguish Between Clove of Garlic vs. Head of Garlic?

Do you know how many cloves in a head of garlic? Do you know the difference between Clove of garlic and head of garlic? Or what all that needs to be done to plant garlic? What all varieties of garlic are there and, how you can grow, harvest, cure, clean, and store them?

If all these things have been making you confused all this while and you are wondering the answers to such questions, then you don’t need to worry anymore as now you have reached the right place. As through this article, all your queries about garlic will be cured. Continue reading this informative article about garlic cloves to know more about all of these and much more in detail.


A head of garlic contains a number of small pieces in it, which are known as a clove of garlic. When you purchase garlic, you purchase it in the form of a head of garlic. To use it in your dish, you need to break its head apart. Once it is done, you can see a bunch of garlic cloves in it. They have a whitish-colored skin attached to them. You need to peel that skin off to use it in the preparation of dishes.

Clove of Garlic vs Head of Garlic

Clove of Garlic vs Head of Garlic

Usually, a few cloves are enough for adding to any food preparation. Make sure you know the recipe properly or else too little or too much garlic can totally spoil it. You need to keep in mind that uncooked garlic is extremely intense and strong and leave quite its taste.

For using it in a dish, you generally need to crush, mince, or chop two to three garlic cloves. But if you are using garlic after baking or roasting it, then you use up to 40 garlic cloves or even more. Baking or roasting garlic causes its flavor to soften up and thus makes it quite less intense.

How Many Cloves In A Head of Garlic?

You might have come across a recipe, which requires a quarter cup of crushed garlic or 4 garlic cloves. However, it isn’t always simple to make out how many garlic cloves a garlic head has. For solving out your queries, we did an experiment to help us figure out the exact number of garlic heads, that you should buy for such a recipe.

How Many Cloves In A Head of Garlic

Approximately, there are 11 cloves in a head of garlic. But the number of cloves varies due to their bulb size. A garlic head can have 4 to as much as even 30 cloves. So it all depends upon the size, quality, and variety of garlic clove you have purchased. We reached a conclusion through our experiment that typically, 10-12 cloves are present in a garlic head.

When minced, one garlic clove gives about half a teaspoon to one and a half teaspoon. If you are wondering how many cloves make up a quarter cup of minced garlic, then the answer is 12-13 cloves. Now, you can confidently try any recipe which requires garlic. I often use McCormick Minced Garlic to make the great flavor for delicious foods.

Preparations Required for Planting Garlic?

Also ensure that you are following crop rotation smartly. You should never plant garlic, leeks, shallots, or onions continuously in the exact location. Also, keep in mind that the garlic cloves should never be planted beside to a spot where peas or beans are already planted.

If you still do it, it will have a negative effect on the growth of such vegetables. Another thing which needs to be considered is the quality of the soil. For achieving a successful crop, preparation of the soil is extremely important.

You will need well-drained sandy loamy soil for growing garlic cloves. Ensure that the soil is well-amended with fertilizer and compost before you plant the garlic cloves.

If you are still clueless about how to start with the task of planting garlic cloves, then you can take help of these video. Surely, it will solve all your queries about the planting of garlic cloves.

Types of Garlic

This might be new information for you, but there exist greater than 400 varieties and species of garlic. The basic difference, which you need to consider, is between Hardneck and Softneck. Here are the basic 2 kinds of garlic explained in detail:

I. Softneck Garlic

This garlic variety is the most likely one you would see in your supermarket or any grocery store. The green plant of Softneck variety of garlic cloves dies down, and only the garlic bulbs, attached with the flexible stems remain. Such flexible stems are quite simple to braid. There are further two bifurcations of this variety of garlic:

  • Silverskin garlic: This one is quite easy to grow and has an intense flavor. Moreover, it is easy to store, once dried.
  • Artichoke garlic: This one has a mild flavor and generally has bigger and lesser number of cloves than in the Silverskin. Its best function is that it can be stored for long durations as long as 8 months.

II. Hardneck Garlic

On the other hand, the Hardneck variety has a hard or a stiff stem, which later yields a cluster of bulbs or a pretty flower on its other end. Such stems are impossible to braid. Basically, there are 3 species in Hardneck garlic. They are mentioned below in detail:

  • Rocambole: This kind of garlic has an extremely rich flavor. It is quite easy to peel and can be stored for as long as 6 months.
  • Porcelain: Its flavor is similar to that of Rocambole variety of garlic. It has approximately 4 big cloves in each garlic head. This variety can be stored for 8 months approximately.
  • Purple stripe: The best garlic to use in baking is purple strip and as its name suggests, it has cloves with distinctive purple streaks on their skin. This variety of garlic can be stored for 6 months approximately.

Planting of Garlic Clove

Planting of Garlic Clove

The best time to plant garlic cloves is in the fall. Garlic cloves will fully develop in winter and fall, and by the start of spring, the plant will support a rapid growth of leaves. This is extremely necessary for the formation of large garlic bulbs or heads. In regions which expect frost, garlic cloves should be planted approximately 7 weeks earlier than the expected date of first frost date.

For southern regions, February or March would be the best time for planting of garlic cloves. Ensure that you have large cloves of garlic because the bigger the cloves, the bigger cloves it will produce.

How to Grow Garlic?

How to Grow Garlic

Now that you know about the soil preparation, best season, fertilizers, and other things, you might be wondering how to actually grow it yourself. So here, you will get to know how to grow it step by step:

  • The first thing you need to do is to choose the right type of garlic.
  • Next, you need to dig the soil up to 8 inches spaced out in every direction. Now, bury the clove tips approximately 2 inches deep in the soil. Ensure that you do not water the plant through its crowns. You should ideally water it when the soil seems to be dry two inches down.
  • The third most important thing that you need to keep in mind is that you should always cut off all flowering scapes that are present in the Hardneck garlic. This ensures that these scrapes do not draw any energy and nutrition from the clove bulbs.

You can also have a look at this video to visually see the process in detail.

Top 3 Best LED Grow Lights

LED grow light is the best choice for growing garlic indoor with insufficient sunlight. It saves energy, keeps the environment cooler and is even more effective. Below is the comparison table of top 3 best LED grow light which will help you quickly make the perfect choice.

Harvesting of Garlic

Basically, there are 3 varieties of garlic cloves, on the basis of the climatic season, they are suited to. These are late, mid season, and early season. The garlic heads are said to be ready for harvesting, once you see almost all lower leaves browned.

You need to lift up the garlic bulbs to harvest them. Using a fork, commonly known as digging fork, loosen out the soil around the plant. Lightly lift them up from the row. Next, place the garlic bulbs in a large, flat carrier. This is how harvesting of garlic is done.

Harvest Garlic

Harvest Garlic

Cure, Clean and Store The Garlic

Once you have invested time and efforts in growing garlic, you would obviously want to store it in a way that it can be consumed for a long period of time. For ensuring appropriate storage you need to keep a few tips in mind. Have a look at them below:


It is a process of drying the garlic, so as to prepare it for use in long term. For curing the garlic you need to place the garlic in an airy, shady, and dry place. Ensure that there is space for air circulation and they are not kept under the direct sunlight.


For cleaning the garlic before storage, you have to trim off its leaves and roots. You can also remove some extra layers of skin from the garlic head but make sure you do not expose the garlic cloves.


Never wash them for storage. You can braid them and then hang them in a bunch or just sprawl them in an ideal place away from sunlight and moisture. You can also store them in a nylon bag. The ideal temperature for storing garlic heads is approximately 55 degrees to 65 degrees Fahrenheit.


Through this article, all your doubts would have been cleared by now. You got to know about how many cloves each garlic head has on an average, how you need to measure and convert quantities, the difference between a clove and a garlic head, preparation for growing garlic, seasons appropriate for its growth, its cleaning, and storage, and finally when and how to harvest the yield.

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