It may be that you did not choose the best variety for your climate.
I can only plant softnecks in a warm climate.
I keep the garlic in the refrigerator drawer for about 6 wks to condition them before planting.
I did find that garlic likes the compost and suplemental nitrogen in the fall when it makes leaves. (My leaves keep growing after they are planted, no snow here)
After the leaf growth slows, I stop any additional nitrogen. As the days get longer, the bulbs should start forming. When the tops die back they are ready to harvest
When I continue to give it nitrogen, I get very nice tops and no bulbs
If I don't give it enough nitrogen in the beginning, I don't get enough leaf growth and the bulbs will be formed, but small.
If I plant at the wrong time of the year, the bulb is smaller than the one I planted.
Below is a link to growing garlic in Arizona
https://cals.arizona.edu/yavapai/anr/hor ... arlic.html
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.