The Veggies You Need To Keep Away From Fresh Garlic

People love garlic, but not every veggie gets along well with the aromatic. When stored properly, garlic bulbs can last for up to six months. However, when placed next to certain produce items they will go bad much more quickly. Tomatoes, potatoes, and green onions all produce ethylene, a gas that comes from plant hormones and causes some foods, like garlic, to ripen much quicker than they would on their own. And veggies aren't the only culprits here — fruits like apples, blueberries, grapes, and mango are also considered to be ethylene-producing. If you keep your garlic next to these types of foods, it will turn bitter and begin sprouting.

But even if you keep your garlic away from its tomato and potato foes, it can still sprout if not stored correctly. If exposed to too much warm, humid air, you may also see little green shoots that indicate your cloves have started to go bad. You may even start to see mold or growing roots if your bulbs are kept in a humid cupboard for too long. A dry, cool place is needed to keep your garlic in optimal condition until you're ready to use it.

Where you should put your garlic

So how should you store your garlic? As we mentioned, keep it away from any ethylene-producing veggies and fruits. Although we want to avoid humidity, the ideal storage space depends on the form of garlic you've got. Bulbs are best kept in a dry, cool cupboard in a container that allows for airflow like a mesh bag or wire basket. Trying to store whole bulbs in the fridge may end up backfiring since the cold can also cause your cloves to sprout more quickly. A temperature between 50 and 68 degrees Fahrenheit is ideal.

However, if you have already peeled your cloves or minced them up, you're going to want to keep them in the fridge. If you can, keep your ethylene-producing foods like potatoes on the counter and your garlic in the fridge. But if you need to store your fruits or veggies in the fridge too, try covering them in plastic wrap or locking them in a zip-top bag to seal in the gas as much as possible. Or, keep them in a bottom drawer and place your garlic on a top shelf. If the thought of your bulbs being in the same space as your tomatoes still make you antsy, however, you can always puree your garlic and freeze it for up to three months for optimal flavor.