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  1. #1
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    Default Anyone growing creole garlic varieties?

    We enjoy cooking with garlic often and last year I decided to try a few varieties and see what might grow for me that we like. Last November I set out the following:
    Music - 6 hills
    Lorz Italian - 12 hills
    Siberian - 7 hills
    Xian - 30 hills
    Chinese Pink - 12 hills
    Shantung Purple - 14 hills
    Mother of Pearl - 45 hills
    Creole Red - 33 hills
    Ajo Rojo Creole - 40 hills
    Spanish Morado Creole - 34 hills
    Burgundy Creole - 60 hills

    On May 11 I found the my Xian was ready to dig, and today I dug my Chinese Pink, Shantung Purple, and Lorz Italian. This will probably be the last year for the Lorz Italian but the others I've dug produced decent bulbs overall.
    I have Music - 6 hills, Siberian - 7 hills, Mother of Pearl - 45 hills, Creole Red - 33 hills, Ajo Rojo Creole - 40 hills, Spanish Morado Creole - 34 hills, Burgundy Creole - 60 hills that aren't ready.
    The Music, Siberian, and Mother of Pearl are green and appear to still be growing, although I have had a few scapes.
    Judging from the foliage I would think my creole varieties were ready, but all bulbs are very small... 1" or so on those I've checked. The leaves and stems are browned up like grass that had been sprayed with roundup four or five days. I was under the impression that the creoles thrived in the deep south, but maybe I'm not deep enough? Are there any special things that creole varieties require? All of these varieties were set out at the same time in the same raised bed last November.

  2. #2
    Epic Contributor Bird's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone growing creole garlic varieties?

    Glenn, I love Cajun cookin' and like garlic for lots of other things, too, but I didn't even know there were that many varieties. [img]/forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif[/img]

  3. #3
    Super Member
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    Default Re: Anyone growing creole garlic varieties?

    Glenn I really like fresh garlic and use it heavily when cooking. There is nothing like baked escargot drenched in garlic butter. But I have never grown it myself. Is it a lot of work to do so? I have a really large garden and wouldn't be opposed to adding some.

    It sounds to me like you know garlic! [img]/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Anyone growing creole garlic varieties?

    Growing garlic successfully is a helpful link.
    The GardenWeb Alliums forum is another source.

    I don't "know" garlic yet, but I'm trying to figure it out! I remember my grandmother's garlic growing in the garden, and when I tried to grow it I always ended up with a huge clump of "rounds" that didn't get very large and didn't divide into cloves. I started reading and discovered that if you don't dig the garlic it will revert to "rounds" and multiply into a mass. I believe that you can plant the rounds separately and dig when mature and they supposedly will begin to develop cloves if it isn't a variety that doesn't divide.
    My planting last November was my first attempt after reading "how to do it". Planting dates and recommended types will vary according to your location but generally plant in Oct/Nov. They need deep loamy soil with lots of organic matter (everything likes that) and well drained. I'm using raised beds built from 2x6. They don't compete well with weeds so it's important to have a clean bed and mulch to help hold moisture in and keep weeds down. I planted about 6" apart in rows about 10-12" apart and all these are in one end of a 6'wide raised bed.
    It's not a lot of work so far. Plant in the fall. They develop root systems over the winter. Grow in the spring. Harvest will vary with location and variety, but I thought later than May 11.
    Generally June or so... When the foliage and stems get about 50-75% brown it's time to dig most varieties. Some varieties are different... The Xian was ready to dig when the foliage started browning good but not 50%. The Shantung Purple and Chinese Pink (other Turban varieties) were ready yesterday.
    My creole varieties have me stumped. They're supposed to be ideal for my area but aren't going to make it I don't think. The foliage indicates they're ready to dig, but all I have checked have very small bulb development. The Turbans that I've dug had bulbs from 2-3" diameter generally, and I can live with that. The Lorz Italian is a hardneck and didn't do very well.
    When you dig, just shake the dirt off and spread in a dry place out of direct sunlight for a few weeks for curing. Then cut the roots back to about 1/2", trim the stem off 1 - 2" above the bulb, brush the remaining dirt off and store in onion sacks. Use the smaller cloves for eating and save the larger for seed.
    You'll discover that "seed" garlic is expensive if you decide to try some. Generally "hardneck" varieties do better in the northern areas and "softnecks" in the south, but it's not always a fact. I decided last year to try several varieties to determine what I could grow and from that, decide which we preferred to eat. The creoles that I expected to do best so far aren't making a show!
    By the way, if you decide you want to plant some this fall I'll probably have enough to share some seed to get you a start... PM me.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Anyone growing creole garlic varieties?

    Glenn thanks for the additional info and the links. There is a LOT of good reading there for anyone like me who might consider a garlic crop.

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