Agricultural companies are increasingly using controlled-environment cultivation systems to expand the product range available to consumers, who wish to have access to a wider variety and availability of locally grown fresh produce throughout the year. This project focused on the production of green garlic, i.e., garlic that is harvested before full maturity, in controlled environments. It aimed to optimize the cultivation process and to promote the development of abundant, aromatic and non-fibrous foliage. The work focused on fertilization, light intensity, plant density and pruning of planted cloves.
Balanced microelement fertilization resulted in good root development, and when compared to the control treatment the plants and the yield per plant and per unit area were larger. Of the three planting densities tested, intermediate density proved to be a good balance between production quality and yield. Yield was influenced by the size of the plants and that of the planted cloves. Finally, light intensity only had a moderate impact on performance.
Overall, green garlic cultivation under controlled conditions has yielded good results. Garlic responds well to LED lighting and the hydroponic system. Green garlic is an interesting crop for closed environment production systems because their cycles are short, high-density production can be achieved with little light, and harvesting is simple.