Using the CLI

Here, we'll describe at a high level the common day-to-day usage of the Garden CLI, with specific examples.

CLI introduction

The garden CLI is how you work with Garden in most scenarios, during development and in CI pipelines. It features a fairly large number of commands, so we'll list the most common ones below. You can run garden --help to list them, and use garden <command> --help to learn more about individual commands, arguments, option flags, usage examples etc. You can also find a full reference here.

If you've not installed the CLI yet, please check out the installation guide.

Most of the examples below assume that you've already defined a Garden project.

It is currently not advisable to run multiple dev, build, deploy or test commands in parallel because they may interfere with each other. It is fine, however, to run one of those and then run other commands to the side, such as garden logs. We plan on improving this in the future.

Common option flags

Every Garden command supports a common set of option flags. The full reference can be found here, but here are the most important ones:

  • --env sets the environment (and optionally namespace) that the command should act on. Most Garden commands only act on a specific environment, so in most cases you'll specify this, unless you're working on the default environment for the project. See here for more about environments and namespaces.

  • --log-level / -l sets the log level. Use e.g. -l=debug to get debug logs for the command.

  • --output / -o sets the output format. Use this to get structured output from the commands. --output=json outputs JSON, and --output=yaml outputs YAML. The structure of the outputs is documented in the reference for most commands.

All option flags can be specified with a space or a = between the flag and the value.

Deploy actions

Deploying all Deploys in a project

This deploys all Deploy actions to the default environment and namespace.

garden deploy

Deploying all Deploys in a project to a non-default environment and namespace

This deploys all Deploy actions to my-namespace in the dev environment.

garden deploy --env

Deploying a single Deploy

garden deploy my-deploy

Deploying more than one specific Deploy

When arguments accept one or more actions we space-separate the names.

garden deploy deploy-a deploy-b

Deploying a Deploy with sync enabled

See the Code synchronization guide for more information on how to configure and use syncing for rapid iteration on Deploys.

garden deploy my-deploy --sync=*

Executing a command in a running Deploy container

garden exec my-deploy -- <command>

Executing an interactive shell in a running Deploy container

Note: This assumes that sh is available in the container.

garden exec my-deploy -- sh

Getting the status of your Deploys

garden get status

Getting the status of your Deploys in JSON format

This is suitable for parsing with e.g. the jq utility.

garden get status --output=json  # or `-o json` for short

Stopping all running Deployss

This removes all running Deploy actions in my-namespace in the dev environment.

garden cleanup env

Stopping a single running Deploy

garden cleanup deploy my-deploy

Test actions

Running all tests in a project

garden test

Running a specific test and attaching

This is handy for running a single test and streaming the log outputs (garden test, in comparison, is more meant to run multiple ones or watch for changes, and is less suitable for getting log output).

garden test my-test -i

Run actions

Running a specific Run action

garden run my-run-action

Build actions

Building all Builds

garden build

Building all Builds, forcing a rebuild

garden build --force  # or -f for short

Building a specific Build

garden build my-build


Running a workflow

Runs my-workflow in my-namespace in the dev environment.

garden workflow my-workflow


Retrieving the latest logs for all Deploys

garden logs

Retrieving the latest logs for a single Deploy

garden logs my-deploy

Stream logs for a Deploy action

garden logs my-deploy --follow  # or -f for short

garden dev

The garden dev command runs the Garden interactive development console. In that console you can execute Garden commands in interactive mode, like build, deploy, run, test and others. To see the full list of available commands execute the help command in the development console.

Running interactive development console

garden dev

Sync mode

For rapid iteration on a running Deploy action, you can use a feature called sync mode. See the Code synchronization guide for details on how to configure and use that feature.

Project outputs

Project outputs are a handy way to extract generated values from your project.

Printing project outputs

garden get outputs

Getting project outputs in JSON format

This you can use to parse in scripts, e.g. using jq.

garden get outputs --output=json  # or `-o json` for short

You can also output in YAML with --output=yaml.

Creating new configs

Creating a new project

This bootstraps a boilerplate garden.yml with a project definition in the current directory, and a .gardenignore file.

garden create project

Creating actions

See the actions guide to learn more about actions and how to create them.

Remote sources

Remote sources are a mechanism to connect multiple git repositories in a single Garden project. See the remote sources guide for more information, including how to use the CLI to manage these sources.

Plugin commands

Individual plugins (currently referred to as providers in your project configuration) may include specific commands that help with their usage and operation. The available commands will depend on which providers are configured in your project.

You can run garden plugins without arguments to list the available commands.

Initializing a Kubernetes cluster for in-cluster building

When using a remote Kubernetes cluster and in-cluster building, the cluster needs to be set up with some shared services when you first start using it, when you update the provider configuration, or sometimes when you update to a new Garden version. See the remote kubernetes guide for more information.

Here we initialize the cluster configured for the dev environment:

garden plugins kubernetes cluster-init --env=dev

Planning and applying Terraform stacks

The terraform provider includes several commands that facilitate interaction with the Terraform stacks in your project. See the Terraform guide for more information.

Plugin tools

Garden plugins generally define their external tool dependencies, such that Garden can automatically fetch them ahead of use. The garden tools command exposes these tools, so that you can use them without having to install them separately. You can also use these to ensure that you're using the exact same versions as the Garden plugins.

Note that this command currently only works when run within a Garden project root.

If you use this frequently, we recommend defining the following helper function for quick access:

# Note: This is made to work in bash and zsh, other shells may need a different syntax
function gt() {
  garden tools $1 -- "${@:2}"

You can then type e.g. gt docker build . to run docker build . using the Garden-provided version of the docker CLI.

Run garden tools to get a full list of available tools, and garden tools --help for more usage information.

Running a plugin tool

Note that the -- is necessary to distinguish between Garden options, and kubectl arguments. See above for a shorthand function you can put in your shell profile.

garden tools kubectl -- <args>

Getting the path of a plugin tool

This prints the absolute path to the kubectl binary defined by the kubernetes provider, downloading it first if necessary.

garden tools kubectl --get-path

Next Steps

Take a look at our Guides section for in-depth guides on specific use cases and setups, or keep exploring other sections under Using Garden to learn more about Garden concepts and configuration.

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