Rocambole - giant garlic on your table!

Garlic is one of the indispensable ingredients of culinary masterpieces. However, not everyone likes its pungent smell and pungent taste. Garlic rockambol has a much milder taste and smell than ordinary garlic. In addition to taste, rockambol has bulbs of extraordinary size.

Plant description

The plant, known as rocambol garlic, is officially called comb onion. It is found in nature in many countries, but is especially common in the south and west of Europe, in Central Asia, the Caucasus and the Crimea. In China and Korea, it has been cultivated for a long time and is used both in cooking and in medicine.

Garlic rockambole is also called Egyptian onion, Spanish garlic, elephant onion, horse garlic.

Elephant, egyptian or spanish garlic on video

Hairstyle - a perennial plant of the family Liliaceae. In appearance, the rockambole resembles leeks. Its tight. a large diameter trunk grows to 0.8–1.2 m in height, depending on the quality of the soil. Pale green broad leaves come out of the trunk, having a dense structure and a silvery waxy coating.

Rockambol inflorescences are very large and beautiful, allowing the plant to be used for decorative purposes

Flowering begins in July. The plant produces a flower-bearing arrow about a meter long, with spherical inflorescence collected from bells of a lilac hue. Seeds are usually not tied.

The onion-head consists of 4-6 cloves covered with fibrous scales. The size of the head is very large - the average size is 6–7 cm, up to a maximum of 10 cm, and the mass is 100 g, under good conditions - up to 300–400 g. By the end of the first year after planting, a bulb of one clove is formed, in the second year, the usual a multi-tooth bulb, under the upper layer of which children are formed (4–20 pcs). Kids are the main way to breed rockambol.

Children are formed by the end of the second year, growing under the upper layer of the peel

Varieties of garlic rockambol

Like other garden crops, garlic rockambol is divided into various varieties. Two varieties of this garlic are officially registered in Russia: Pearls and Janissaries. In addition, many lovers grow a Belarusian variety of rockambol - the White Elephant.

The white elephant was bred by Belarusian breeders specifically for cultivation in cold regions. A feature of the plant is the lack of flower arrows. Bulbs weighing 150-200 g usually consist of 6-7 cloves (occasionally - 8). The color of the pulp on the cut is yellowish. The variety is resistant to fusarium.

The white elephant has very large bulb sizes

The winter-hardy variety Pearls was grown in the Federal Scientific Center for Vegetable Production (Moscow Region). Work on the variety was completed in 2004, and it was included in the State Register in 2006. It is a mid-season culture that can be grown throughout Russia. The technology for cultivating Pearls is the same as for winter garlic. Pearls form a flower arrow, has very long (up to 60 cm) and wide (3–3.5 cm) leaves that can be eaten at a young age. Flat bulbs, covered with white leathery scales, are not as large as those of the White Elephant - the average mass is 53 g. The bulb is made up of 4-6 cloves, each of which reaches a mass of up to 12 g. 3-5 children are formed on an adult onion. The flesh of a yellowish color has a rather pungent taste. The yield of garlic Pearls is up to 2 kg / m2.

Janissary - winter-resistant garlic of domestic selection

Rockyball variety Yanychar is very "young" - registered in 2015. Received it breeders A.F. Bukharov, A.R. Bukharova and A.V. Petrishchev. This variety is winter-hardy, so it is recommended to grow it throughout the Russian Federation (the technology is the same as for winter garlic).

Refers to shoot varieties. The length of the leaves is up to 40 cm, the width is 3–3.5 cm. The leaves are painted green and covered with a medium-density wax coating. An onion weighing up to 95 g consists of 6 cloves and forms up to 5 children. Covering flakes are creamy in color, and the flesh is yellowish.

Advantages and disadvantages, especially garlic rockambol

The advantages of rocambol garlic is that it tastes less spicy and more juicy than regular garlic. A particularly surprising property is the combination of the taste of onions and garlic in one vegetable. Like many types of onions, combed onions are rich in vitamins A and C, as well as iron. Like garlic, rockambol contains allicin.

The lack of garlic rockambole can be called not too long shelf life - an average of 4-6 months.

Compared to regular garlic, the rockambole looks like a giant.

Of great benefit is the use of fresh rockambol. It has a positive effect on the cardiovascular and digestive systems, has an antiviral effect and enhances immunity, prevents fungal diseases, and helps with poisoning. Rockambol can also be used in cosmetology - to remove acne, strengthen hair, fight varicose veins.

In folk medicine, rockambole is used to remove warts, treat tonsillitis, insomnia and other diseases.

Features of growing garlic rockambol

The technology for growing garlic rockambol is the same as for ordinary garlic.


You can plant a rockball in both spring and autumn. It is only necessary to bear in mind that in the cold regions the hairy onions planted in autumn can freeze out. You must either postpone the planting until spring, or cover the planting with insulation material.

For planting garlic rockambole, you need to choose the southern, well-sun-heated area. Although the rockambol tolerates drought well, areas with moderately moist soil are preferred.

It is advisable to plant rockball after lupine, alfalfa, legumes, zucchini, cabbage or cucumbers. Undesirable precursors are onions, garlic and potatoes.

The soil for growing garlic should be loose, with a high content of organic substances. Processing begins immediately after harvesting the previous crop. The soil should be dug to a depth of 5 to 25 cm (the denser the soil, the deeper it is necessary to dig), introducing 6–8 kg of compost or rotted manure and 1-2 handfuls of bone meal for each square meter. You can use another mixture - 5 kg of humus and 2-3 glasses of ash.

The surface of the soil should be leveled, cleaned of stones, hard clods and weeds. The beds are oriented in the north-south direction.

Planting material must also be prepared. Kids or one-tooth bulbs need to be sorted by size so that the shoots are friendly. Teeth and onion-bulbs need to be cleaned of pieces of the old bottom, which prevents rooting.

If you plant a rockambole with children, then by the end of the year you will get one-tooth bulbs. Planting a single tooth will give a large bulb, consisting of several cloves.

It is recommended to soak teeth, bulbs or children on knocks in a solution of potassium permanganate or an infusion of ash (1 cup per 1 liter of hot water, boil for 10 minutes).

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The prepared seed is planted to a depth of 4–7 cm (shorter depth for children), observing a distance between plants of 15–20 cm, and between rows of 25–30 cm.

The soil is watered and mulched with peat, compost or sawdust (layer thickness 1-3 cm).

Planting garlic rockambol on video

Landing care

Rockambol landing care is simple.

The beds should be regularly watered (10-12 buckets per 1 m2) with a frequency of 1-2 times a week. Drying and waterlogging of the soil should not be allowed. The soil crust is destroyed by loosening. Loosening too often is not required - they worsen the structure of the soil and lead to its drying out.

Be sure to remove weeds - they are the intermediate hosts of many diseases!

Flower arrows are recommended to be removed, as they draw strength from the plant. You can leave part of the peduncles for decorative purposes.

Rules for growing rockambol on video

When planting rockambole on rich soils, you can do without fertilizing. If blanching of the leaves is observed, then plants should be fed. After emergence, 10–20 g / m2 of ammonium nitrate is added. When 4 leaves are formed, the beds are watered with a solution of 1 cup chicken droppings and 1 tablespoon of urea per bucket of water (consumption rate 3 l / m2).

At the end of June, when bulbs are formed, phosphorus-potassium fertilizers are required. You can use a solution of ash (1 cup per 10 liters of water) at a flow rate of 4-5 l / m2.

Since the onion is heat-loving, in cold regions it needs to be covered for the winter with a thick layer of mulch.


Unlike ordinary garlic, the rock shooter’s flower arrows are purely decorative and do not bring seeds. Therefore, the main method of propagation of this garlic is to plant children growing under the top layer of integumentary scales. Children are covered with a dense shell, which is desirable to carefully remove before planting to facilitate germination.

Rockambol kids must be carefully removed from the upper skin before boarding

You can propagate rockambole with annual young bulbs, consisting of one clove, or with the cloves of an adult bulb (like regular garlic).

Pests and diseases

Rocambole is affected by the same diseases and pests as other types of garlic and onions. Fusarium is worth fearing, which is most often affected by planting if the predecessor was potato. In addition, the crop may suffer from white rot and rust, and from pests it can be attacked by an onion fly and an onion moth.

If the beds are affected by Fusarium or rust, you need to remove the diseased plants and then 3-4 years do not plant a rockambol in the same place. For the prevention of the disease, you need to deal with the onion fly, ensure that the seed is stored in a cool place and warm the bulbs before planting with hot (40–42 ° C) air.

Some pests and diseases of the onion on the photo

Moth caterpillars damage leaves and cause them to dry out

Onion fly larvae gnaw passages in the pulp, contributing to rotting of the bulbs

Fusarium infection is often caused by contaminated soil.

Prevention of white rot consists in liming acidic soils and reducing doses of nitrogen fertilizers.

There are no special means of control against pests, the main preventive measure is compliance with crop rotation and the rules of agricultural technology, as well as timely weeding of weeds and removal of all plant residues after harvesting. The soil and plants themselves can be pollinated with tobacco dust. The onion fly is frightened off by a carrot smell, so it is advisable to alternate rockambol plants with carrots. Plants affected by pests should be immediately removed from the garden.

Diseases and pests of onions and garlic - video

Harvesting and Harvesting

As soon as the lower leaves begin to dry, and the upper leaves turn yellow, you need to start harvesting. If the bulbs are not removed in a timely manner, their shells will crack, which leads to rot damage and poor storage. In addition, such bulbs crumble during digging.

Bulbs are dug carefully, trying not to damage or hit them. Without cutting the stems, the plants are tied into tight bundles that are suspended in a well-ventilated, dry place. After the bulbs have dried, they must be kept in the light for 2 weeks (this helps to increase the shelf life), then they are stored for storage in a cool room.

The young heads of garlic rockambol are great for conservation

Rockambol heads can be consumed fresh, pickled, added to canned vegetables and meat or fish dishes. During the growing season, young leaves and stems can be collected and used for food.

Reviews gardeners about garlic rockambol

I prefer Rocambole, as its taste is delicate and less pungent than that of garlic, and the smell is not so harsh. Also, onion-garlic heads (unlike ordinary ones) are well stored almost until the new crop. Rockambol is a valuable plant for nutrition and maintaining health. Like other onions, it contains vitamins A and C and iron. Like garlic, it contains a substance that activates vitamin B1. In addition, onion-garlic has antiviral properties, helps to cleanse blood and blood vessels, strengthens the body's defenses and cures intestinal diseases. Young rockambol leaves used on salads. We add onion with garlic aroma to meat dishes, and in fish it well discourages a specific smell. Leaves and bulbs can be preserved. We add the teeth to the cucumbers and tomatoes when pickling, due to their large size they are easy and quick to clean.


I have been growing Rocambole for many years. I plant it like winter garlic, if I plant it with my teeth, we get a two-year-old culture and children - a three-year-old culture. It is not as frost-resistant as ordinary garlic, so I mulch the garden. Rocambole blooms in June but does not give seeds, so I immediately cut off the arrow. Planted in late September-October to a depth of 7-9cm. and 8-10cm. in a row. Children need to be cleaned even though this unpleasant husk occupation is very durable, cornified, they may not rise. Teeth do not need to be cleaned; their husks are ordinary and they sprout so well. One-tooth bulbs grow from children and small teeth, and large large heads come from small teeth. The plant itself looks more chic than ordinary garlic, leaves the stem and head. But honestly, in our family he is not particularly favored. The daughter does not recognize at all, says a nasty taste and the rest are more drawn to the usual garlic. So this mother-in-law is selling on the market, which is very pleased, his big heads are snapping up in an instant.


Rocambole breeds both in large bulbs and in children, is very well stored, so it can be grown as a spring crop, only in this case the heads will be smaller. Take care of it like ordinary garlic, only water more often, then the bulbs will grow larger. When the lower leaves begin to turn yellow and dry it is necessary to start harvesting, you can’t tighten it so as not to lose the children on the roots and onions under the scales.


Garlic rockambol will delight lovers with its juicy and mild taste. Despite its exotic origin, it does not require special care. Proper crop rotation, timely watering and weeding will provide the gardener with a crop of incredibly large and tasty bulbs.


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