The wild ancestors of today’s garlic, Allium sativum, originated thousands of years ago in what is believed to be garlic’s center of origin, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan. Garlic spread across the globe as it became a popular vegetable, spice, and medicinal plant. The varieties of cultivars we have today were each selected for Continue reading The benefits of removing garlic scapes
Michael Celetti, Plant Pathologist, Horticulture Crops
Ontario Ministry of Agriculture Food and Rural Affairs
The cool wet weather experienced last fall (2014) and the recent rain in June 2015 was ideal for stem and bulb nematode (Ditylenchus dipsacci) to multiply and spread this growing season. This pest can cause significant damage to garlic crops. Obvious symptoms in garlic often appear around the time when scapes emerge in late June or early July.
Stem and bulb nematodes are often introduced into a field by planting infested garlic cloves. One stage (4th juvenile) of the nematode is particularly adapted to resist desiccation and freezing and can persist for many years under dry or cold conditions. Young juvenile nematodes within the infested cloves develop into adults during the fall and spring. When the nematodes have reached maturity, they mate and the females lay eggs. The nematodes can live from 45 to 75 days, depending upon the condition, and a single female can lay up to 500 eggs within her life span. It only takes 19 days after hatching from eggs to develop into mature adults when temperatures average around 15oC. The short period of time between egg hatch and maturity together with the frequency of reproduction during the life span of a female often results in an explosion of this pest population under cool wet conditions.