The forum's covered maximizing cottage turns with a granary, maximizing rapid expansion, other optimizations. But we've never covered, having a granary-less city, what's the fastest way to grow? Once you have the granary, your food production effectively doubles. But to build the granary, you have to invest hammers, meaning less food, or whip, meaning you have to regrow. Technically the best way to grow is to chop the granary while improving and growing normally, but for now let's assume you can't chop, although you can whip. So here's two scenarios: 1) Easier scenario: granary is half-built (30 hammers), you can whip to finish it, or you can use your extra population to run a mine(s) to slow build it. Under which conditions, that is, tile selections, do you whip it and under which do you build it normally. 2) new city, no granary, large happy cap. (When) do you choose to grow to size 4 and whip, grow then invest hammers, grow then invest hammers and whip, or just invest hammers and don't grow. A simple example: you have a plains/hill/copper (6 hammers), 2 unirrigated rice (4 food), and at least one grassland hill mine and plains hill mine and grassland farms. Do you build the granary with the copper, grow to size 2 with the rice and work the copper, grow to size 2 with the rice and work the copper and whip, work both rices ... etc. And feel free to factor in the actual granary mechanics (see vocum insineratio: whipping). My apologies for making this too generalized for easy responses.