Yep, still planting time! It may feel as if not much grows in winter, but along with many greens and brassicas, garlic can easily be planted from September through November for harvest the following July. Plant them in a sunny spot in your garden (or where the sun used to be, now that the rains have started! Don't fret, the sun will come again!)
Soil: Garlic and onions grow well in a light, medium fertile soil that drains well. Too much nitrogen in the soil causes heavy top growth and delays bulb formation. This is why garlic and onions are known as a second yield crop, which means they do best when planted in an area where another crop - tomatoes or other plant that has needed a highly fertile soil - has already been grown and harvested. For our West Coast environment, where the heavy rain means the soil is usually acidic, it also helps to amend the soil with wood ash or dolomite lime.
Again, like other bulbs, garlic doesn´t need its own bed: it can be planted in amongst other vegetables - in winter, scattered through a kale bed or interplanted with broccolis - as "health keeper." Garlic repels slugs and snails, and also helps to prevent fungal infections in your other plants.
Pests: Garlic is a relatively carefree with few pests or diseases. Avoid leaving old plant parts in the ground and - as with all your food crops - use a rotation system in your garden, changing beds each year in a 3- or 4-year rotation. We have also found out the hard way that top dressing (or probably digging in) manure is a bad idea: it apparently helps promote garlic rust, a viral infection that, while harmless to us, can slow growth and eventually kill the plant.
We like to grow "Red Russian" which has substantial purple-streaked bulbs and which can handle wet weather very well. It has a delicious taste and stores for about 4-6 month.