Garlic likes slightly acidic, well-cultivated soil with plenty of organic matter (compost). Garlic roots do best when planted before the ground freezes to allow for root establishment prior to wintery cold temperatures. Separate bulbs into cloves, but don't bother to peel each clove. Plant garlic cloves 2" deep (blunt end down, pointy end up) and 4-6" apart with 12-15" between rows. Mulch garlic with straw or leaves to conserve water, protect young bulbs through winter, and deter spring weeds. Shoots will push through mulch in spring. Garlic should be kept weed free and depending on moisture levels, which vary by location and mulching, it often benefits from light irrigation in the spring. When the garlic leaves begin to turn yellow (late June and into July) hold back on watering. Harvest bulbs when there are 4 to 5 green leaves still on the plant. Make braids or bundles of 6-10 bulbs and hang in a dry, shady place to cure for 3-4 weeks before storing.