We have a couple of bulbs of “special” garlic we saved for planting. Right now, I can't even remember what it is or where we got it, but it's been in the fridge and we just remembered that we need to get it planted ASAP and today is a good planting day for root crops.
Last year we didn't plant our garlic until December and when we last checked it, we decided to simply leave it in the ground another year.
So I just searched the web and found these helpful hints:
Some Planting and Growing Tips To Improve Your Crop
We soak the cloves overnight in water containing liquid seaweed and either apple cider vinegar OR baking soda, but not both (you can use either but if you use both, they will neutralize each other) at the rate of one tablespoon each per gallon of water to inhibit fungal growth and stimulate rooting. Next we soak it for 3 to 5 minutes or so in rubbing alcohol in order to kill any mites or other hitchhikers, and plant immediately. This may seem a little draconian, but many pathogens that affect garlic present few or no symptoms until it is too late, and the soaking eliminates most problems before they develop. For long term soil health, it is best not to plant anything but healthy cloves.
Growing garlic in rotation with other crops which we fertilize with old cow and chicken manure as well as compost means we don't have to fertilize the garlic very much, just so the soil stays loose and soft to make planting go easier. Every two weeks during the growing season we give the garlic a foliar feeding using the same formula that we use for inoculation, but adding a tablespoon of molasses as well.
Stop feeding once the bulb begins to swell and grow, but continue to water. We discontinue watering a week or so before harvesting to let the soil and the garlic dry down some as late watering can cause bulb wrappers to split as the bulbs swell up too rapidly. Excess water during this time can also lead to fungal and other disease problems.
Special Considerations for the Desert Southwest – All kinds of garlics, including Rocamboles have been grown successfully in Santa Fe and other mountainous areas. In the typical prairie/desert flatlands; however, I'm not so sure about Rocamboles, but just about all others should do well most years.
I just don't have a lot of information about this part of the country and am hoping to get more feedback from those who live there what kinds of garlics have thrived for them so I can fill in a little more information here, since I have no personal experience growing there. If anyone who has grown garlics there will let me know how they did, I would appreciate it.
I suspect the cold nights will allow more kinds to do well there rather than just the Artichokes and Creoles. I think Silverskins, Purple Stripes and Porcelains will do well there and also Asiatic/Turban garlics, too.
We'll do that overnight soaking and plant tomorrow morning.