Wild Garlic (Allium vineale) can be difficult to remove from your garden. If you see one leaf, then you can be sure that more will soon be on its way. It’s not native to the U.S. and was introduced from Europe.
Garlic is perennial, grows in clumps, and has hollow, round, grass-like leaves. If you’re not sure if that’s what you have in your yard, then rub the leaves between your fingers; you can not mistake the smell.
This plant reproduces by both underground bulbs and seeds (bulblets); though it primarily reproduces by bulbs. I can’t say I have ever noticed it in bloom. When the temperatures begin to get very warm in summer, the leaves will disappear.
How to get rid of wild garlic
If the ground is loose or the soil is moist from a recent rain, you may be able to pull up a clump by hand. But if the leaves break off, you will need to dig up the remaining bulbs. The best method of removal is to dig up an entire clump with a small shovel. This way, you can visually inspect the soil and make sure you removed all bulbs.
Do not throw the garlic bulbs on the ground or put them in compost – the may take root again! Garlic can remain dormant in soil for a long period of time, so don’t be fooled into thinking a bulb is dead. Dispose of these in trash or make sure that they fully decompose in compost before using in the garden.
If the garlic is in your lawn, it’s up to you whether they need to be removed or not. Me, I just leave them in the ground and mow over them. They don’t bother me (and the smell is rather pleasant) in my lawn.
If you keep on top of digging out the clumps of wild garlic, pretty soon you’ll get them under control.