We start off by cutting the bundles of garlic hanging up down from the barn rafters, We cut the stems off and leave about 1.5" to 2" of stem and then sort the garlic by different sizes: culinary, kitchen grade, seed stock, and premium jumbo sizes, ranging from about 1.5" in diameter to more than 3" diameter in size.
Then each garlic gets the roots cut to 1/4" to 3/8" in length. Each garlic's remaining roots get brushed to get any remaining dust and dirt out. We then peel away the outside layer (or two) to make the bulb look clean. Sometimes the wrapper falls right off...and sometimes it is a tedious process... which can vary from bulb to bulb. We will spend most of the next 2 weeks going through this "cleaning" process.
From start of planting a clove until the customer opens up a box of gourmet garlic, the plant may be touched up to 14 times from start to finish...and that's not including weeding four or five times!