I did manage to get started planting next year's garlic before things really heated up. I did it a bit early because the weather was so nice. I read that the best garlic planting time is on or just after the Autumn Equinox. I jumped the gun a little planting some of them in early September, but didn't manage to plant everything. For that I'll probably wait until we get another cold front, because I just don't feel motivated enough to endure the heat, humidity, and mosquitoes out there. Last year I planted my garlic in October, and most of them turned out OK, so I guess I still have plenty of time.
This year I've got some new varieties to try, thanks to a GardenWeb trade with a very generous trade partner. He sent me five more varieties of heirloom garlic (which is a lot more than what I actually asked for). Top row pictured is Lorz Italian, Ajo Rojo, and Inchelium Red. The bottom row is two bulbs each of Sonoran and Shilla.
Sadly, when I was looking over my "seed garlic" saved from my last harvest, Bogatyr was all rotted. I pulled out the bulbs I set aside for planting, and they squished in my hand. I immediately dug out the Bogatyr I had set aside for eating, stored in a mesh onion bag in a kitchen cabinet, and it was also all squishy. I know that hardnecks in general don't store as long as softnecks, but they have to at least store until replanting time, right? What a shame!
Next I checked out the garlics that didn't do that well for me the last time around: Chrysalis Purple, Pskem River, and Persian Star.
In addition to planting Persian Star and Pskem River right away, I also planted some of my new varieties. Sonoran and Shilla are both reputed to not store for a long time, so I decided to plant them early as well. I noticed my Georgian Fire is starting to get a bit of green to them, meaning they're about to sprout. I went ahead and planted my GF planting stock and am trying to eat up the rest before my other eating garlic.
The rest of my garlic varieties don't seem to have any sign of rotting or sprouting yet, so I didn't feel any urgency to plant any of them. I had some extra room left in the bed I had prepared, so I went with Lorz Italian since I only have one bulb of that.
The problem is that to plant any more garlic, I'll have to till up some more dirt. Not looking forward to doing that in the mosquito-infested sauna out there. You saw what I had to go through to plant my potatoes! Ugh. But with such a homogeneous forecast for the next 7 days, with no sign of any relief from the heat and humidity, maybe I'll just have to hunker down and get it done.