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Something is digging or pulling my elephant garlic cloves up. Each day I find one or two just above the ground, barely anchored by their roots. Any ideas as to what it is and how to stop it?
Birds probably, firm them in and cover with fleece or netting. I plant my garlic so their noses are under the soil out of view.
At this time of year could be squirrels.They are burying now for their winter store and can smell disturbed soil so wherever you dig they will. If it is use thick plastic netting anchored down so the garlic can grow through it but the squirrels can't dig. As Fleurisa said it could be birds....blackbirds are the worst for doing this....keep an eye out so you can see what is doing it.
If you can start onion sets and garlic cloves in modules in the greenhouse, then they have well developed roots before they go out.
There are very few squirrels around here; in the Fens we don't have many trees. It may be birds, will cover with semi rigid green wire netting that I use to protect the peas from pigeons. Thank you all for your advice
We planted garlic at the school where I am a volunteer and one day I also diiscovered the cloves lying on top of the earth. Think I questioned this on this website and it's actually the roots themselves which push the garlic up. I just pushed them down into place and we had an excellent crop.
I think birds sometimes pull them out - they certainly do this with newly planted shallots - in order to peck at the soft earth and beasties underneath. Once the garlic is well established they won't be able to do this, but in the meanitme you can protect it with fleece, netting etc.
its as break23 says the cloves push themselves out of the ground you just have to push them back in until they get a good hold.