How Our Season Review Reduced Our Garlic Workload

There was a point in our garlic harvest days when we realized that it took us just as long to hang up the garlic to cure as it did to harvest that garlic. And that was way too long!

We found this out one summer when we tracked every task associated with the 3 crops that took up the most space/work at Tourne-Sol  (garlic, onions, and tomatoes).

Once we realised this we made some big changes over the next two years.

These changes eliminated 100s of hours of garlic work from our to do lists. Freeing us up to do other things.

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But the data tracking wasnt enough for us to highlight where we were losing time or what to do about it. We needed to stop and take a moment and look at that data for it to have value.

And even though I know youre busy right now, now is the time to stop and take stock of your season. To review and reflect!!!

And if you want to easily crunch a bunch of records in a spreadsheet – whether they are garlic task records or succession planting needs, you should use a Pivot Table.

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These are the garlic changes we made

  • mow garlic tops down to 18 before harvest so that we were handling less material
  • gather garlic by tying 15 bulbs to each side of a 6 string
  • bring bundles into the barn and immediately hang those bundles over a beam to cure

We also determined exactly how much garlic we needed for our own planting stock, csa baskets, and online orders before harvesting.

We separated the harvest into those 3 groups and had 3 different areas in the barn. 

That meant we could see exactly how much CSA garlic or Order stock we had left.

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The picture features some of the freshly harvested garlic dedicated for planting stock.

These bundles were looped over nails in the rafters.

Though we cut roots off all our sale stock straight in the field, we dont remove the roots from our planting stock.

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