Garlic Harvest 2019

Pulling Garlic

In a year of weird weather, garlic suddenly became ready to pull at Sundog Farm.

Some cloves began to burst and if the farmers couldn’t figure out exactly why, they decided to harvest it all before any more went past its prime.

It was a good call as the garlic heads brought to the barn were large and the crop was bigger than expected. It was an exceptional crop. The harvest took place on two days this week. I helped with the second.

Eight of us worked the field and racked the garlic for curing. It was hot work, and I couldn’t stand the sun and heat for long. After two and a half hours pulling garlic from the field, I changed to the racking operation in the barn to get out of the sun. There was plenty of work for everyone. Here are some photos of the operation.

Eight rows of garlic remained to pull on day two of the garlic harvest. The ground was wet so we pulled, shook off dirt on the roots, and let it dry in the sun for a bit.

Staying hydrated is important and we refilled our water bottles multiple times over the morning.

After an hour or so, the stalks were cleaned of remaining dirt and hauled to the barn in a pickup truck.

The stalks were inspected, sorted by quality and lined up along a two by four rack, three deep. Next a second two by four was placed on top and they were bolted together with three sets of nuts and bolts.

The individual racks were lined up on sawhorses where they will rest and dry until fully cured.

The farm crew got to take some fresh garlic home. Here are six heads I brought back. These are “seconds” that were a bit deformed or had been hit by the fork during harvest. They eat as well as any of them.

After clearing the field of garlic the crew met at the farm house where we ate lunch of grilled brats and hot dogs, fresh grilled vegetables, and pickled asparagus put up last year. The grilled onions had been picked just moments before hitting the grill. Days like this one feels something got accomplished.

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1 Response to Garlic Harvest 2019

  1. So interesting to see pictures of this process!

    Like

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