Garlic Planting Planner

Garlic planting time!

Question for you – how much are you planting this year? Do you know? (Do you even care?)

Silly question. OF COURSE WE CARE! We are passionate about garlic.

But what I am referring to are the many ways of planning the garlic garden. For example, does your garlic garden plan look like THIS???

How not to plan a garlic crop

I should hope not. I mean, who in their right mind would make a garden plan like THAT! Ahm.

Yeah – so that’s why I made a handy-dandy garlic planner in Excel – plug in the numbers, and PRESTO – instant planting plan for you. Check out different scenarios to see what works best in your situation – all in a flash. No senseless scribbles and cross-outs. And what’s more, I am willing to SHARE this amazing tool with all my fans out there who are willing to sign up on a mailing list, which entitles you to other cool stuff down the road. (Confession here: this is my first time trying to make files available for download through cyberspace, so I hope it works.)

For those of you who really don’t have time for all my hype, just
CLICK HERE to grab the Barbolian Fields Garlic Planting Planner right now.
I’m cool with that. Time is of the essence. Many people already have their garlic in the ground. Others are still trying to figure out how and where they’re going to plant it. I usually shoot for planting right around Halloween, give or take a couple of weeks either way.

Ok – for those of you patient souls out there who want to know more of the what & why of the Planner, read on.

Here’s the deal. When it comes to planting garlic, some folks just plant whatever fits in the space they have and eat the rest. That’s a good way. They worry a bit about the advice of “plant the biggest cloves” and wonder what that means, considering they’ve purchased “medium-sized” bulbs and have a bunch of little cloves that they’d just as soon stick in the ground than go through the hassle of peeling and eating. Then again, the cloves are so good, they just might eat them all unless they put some in the ground…and soon.

Others, though, like me, say, “I planted 1300 bulbs last year; this year I’m amping up to 1500.” Although that’s not really what I’m planting – I just threw those numbers out there.

I am one of those nerdy types who go through great extremes to measure each and every bulb, plot the averages on graphs, and try to figure out what works best from year to year, knowing full well that any statistician worth her/his salt would shoot holes through my analysis, based on the obvious fact that I, too, do not always plant the “biggest cloves” – whatever that means – which throws all the averages off right from the get-go.

Still, I try to analyze what works and use that analysis to determine how much to plant of what.

Then there are those who are BIG into growing garlic who go by poundage … “Yeah, I’m doing about 500 lbs this year.”

I’m not sure they worry about stats or even go through the trouble to measure anything. After awhile, you can just tell by looking at ‘em what’s “small,” “medium,” and in the “OMG- that is ONE FINE BULB!” category, and usually it’s a crew making those assessments.

But SOME people – me included – need to know EXACTLY how much garlic we’re going to plant, because we only have SO MUCH space, and quite frankly, every inch counts.

It’s just me and my shovel out there. No big tractors. No crews (although sometimes I get a little help from my friends).

And if you’re paying premium price for top-notch quality seed stock – and let’s be honest here – organic garlic seed stock ain’t cheap (we can save all the reasons why for another post) – you want to make the most of your investment.

I mean, if you’re just going to eat the stuff (in large quantities, possibly), maybe you don’t want to pay top dollar for that which becomes a fond memory of a special epicurean evening – but maybe you DO want to make the most of what might compound into a 5- to 10-fold return on your investment, depending on variety, in next year’s crop. Even if you’re not into it for the business, saving money in these economic times and ending up with a big basketful of garlic to boot (or booty, as the case may be) – is always a good thing.

We garlic growers are a group of great visionaries, what can I say.

So back to our original question: How much are you going to plant?

Planting garlic is, after all, simple math.

If you have a row xx feet long and xx feet wide, if you space your garlic 6” apart down a row and 6” apart across the row – or maybe 8” apart across and 8” down, or maybe 6” across and 8” down, or maybe crammed in tightly at 3” or 4” – and depending on the width of the bed, you have room for xx number of rows, and then you leave room for the sides of the bed, assuming it is raised a few inches to allow better drainage – which, depending on the number of rows across the bed leaves you how many “row spaces” between garlic rows (and how big are those spaces again?), and then you need to factor in the space between beds – 1.5 feet? Enough to allow a small tiller? Enough for a wheelbarrow? 2.5 feet?

Dang. For being simple backyard farmers, we sure are getting complicated here.

AH! But never fear! My Garlic Planting Planner provides a simple solution for you.

I have been making spreadsheet formulas for years – but THIS year, I really nailed it down.

All YOU have to do is plug in your measurements or other variables (be sure to follow the notes!) – and you will be able to see instantly (because this is the power of spreadsheets!) what you have room for and what not – and WHAT’S MORE – you can tweak it to see how different scenarios play out according to your specific specifications. Which is what we all have, to one degree or another.

Fer instance…

Maybe you need a little more room on the side of the beds. Maybe you need more space between beds. Maybe you want to see how much difference in total yield it will make if you space them 5” – 6” – 7” – 8” … you get the idea.

And believe me – I get it – you could figure this out on your own, but you don’t really want to.

What it comes down to is this:

  1. Making the most of what you have
  2. Spending less time scratching your head
  3. Having more time to Get Down, Get Dirty, Get OUT There, and Plant!

So how much does it cost to access this handy-dandy planning tool?

Answer: I’ll let you decide. Give it a try. If you find it useful, it would be absolutely awesome if you hit the PayPal Donate button & bought me a cup of coffee. (I could really use one about now.) You could also send a check, money order, or even cold hard cash to:

Blythe Barbo
Barbolian Fields
3623 Woodcock Rd.
Sequim, WA 98382
 
Dang, I love getting money in the mail. It really makes my day.

But it’s not always about money. Receiving heartfelt thanks is also very gratifying. Trading is always cool, too. And when it gets down to it, I just appreciate the opportunity to help people out there who are passionate, as I am, about growing (and eating) exotic varieties of garlic. I appreciate the opportunity to share whatever wisdom (or folly) I’ve gained in the process. It’s a mutual thing. We help each other.

So – don’t scroll up –
HERE’S THAT LINK again to get your very own copy of the Barbolian Fields Garlic Planting Planner.
Even if you aren’t familiar with Excel – rest assured – it’s easy – and I provide directions every step of the way.

Thank You, again, for your support, in whatever form it takes,

And best of luck to you in all your garlic-growing endeavors!

~Blythe

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