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Guide to Growing Garlic in Your Home

Analysis by Dr. Joseph Mercola Fact Checked

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  • Fresh garlic has potent immune-boosting, antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal effects. Historically, garlic has been widely used in medicine for circulatory and lung ailments
  • Garlic must be fresh to give you optimal health benefits. To activate its medicinal properties, crush the fresh clove prior to swallowing it, or put it through your juicer to add to your vegetable juice
  • Garlic is really super easy to grow, but keep your local climate in mind. Softneck varieties, which can be braided, are best if your winters are mild whereas hardneck varieties fare better in colder areas
  • An optional trick that helps prevent fungal disease and encourages healthy growth is to soak the garlic cloves (with the papery skin still intact) in water with baking soda and liquid seaweed for two hours right before planting
  • Fresh garlic will keep up to six or eight months, depending on the variety, if kept in a cool, dry place. Shelf life can be prolonged even further by dehydrating, pickling, preserving or freezing

Herbs and spices are among the healthiest, most nutrient-dense foods available. They're really a "secret weapon" that just about everyone can take advantage of, regardless of your budget. Not only are they generally inexpensive to buy, they're even less expensive if you grow them yourself. Garlic in particular has long been hailed for its healing powers, especially against infectious diseases like cold and flu. 

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