13 January 2022

Millimetric work in purple garlic sowing task

We return to one of our favourite crops and undoubtedly the most important crop for the economy of our area... "Las Pedroñeras" Purple Garlic. We spent a morning with our friends Jesús, Benito and Sergio and it was really great to be able to see how they sow purple garlic. 

From the beginning of December till the end of January is the best time to sow purple garlic. The Sprint garlic was sown in September together with the white garlic (it has practically ceased to be cultivated in our area), it is the turn of the most important and highest quality garlic, the purple garlic. 

Sowing task must be carried out with great care, as it is the first step towards a good summer harvest. Therefore, the working speed is around 2.5 km/h and the dose to be planted is very important. This dose is controlled by the number of garlic clove sown in one metre, which is around 11 garlic clove/metre. If you calculate the length of the row and average the weight of each garlic clove (varies according to the size of the garlic), you can determine kilograms you need to sow one hectare. 

As you can see in the video, they are working with two JJ Broch 8-row mechanical seed drills, so they can sow a lot of hectares per day. These machines allow tractors to work without problems, with a very low engine speed. This was the opposite of another pneumatic machine from the same manufacturer, which required a lot of engine revolutions for the air turbine to generate the right flow rate. Another important point in the sowing machine is the correct choice of the pinion to be used, which will depend on the size of the garlic cloves and the quantity to be used per metre. In addition, the size of the spoons that take the garlic cloves from the hopper must also be correctly sized so that they do not take double garlic or fail to catch it. 

Finally, another tool that is almost indispensable nowadays is the autoguidance that is used, which for these jobs requires maximum accuracy and therefore an RTK signal. The John Deere 6130M works with John Deere autoguidance and the Massey Ferguson 5713S works with Cerea Spanish autoguidance

Versión en español.