This Article is About
storage tips
fruits and vegetables
fruit and vegetables
cold climate
harvest time
cloudy days
Harvest And Storage Tips
Join 1000's of Authors at StreetArticles Today!

Harvest And Storage Tips

In the High Sierra cold climate garden, September, and sometimes even a warm October, finally result in ripened crops ready to harvest. For many of us who lost our first plantings to June snow, the tomatoes and squash are just ready to pick and other crops with longer maturity periods are approaching harvest time.

I often wonder where exactly I am supposed to keep potatoes, onions, and other long-keeping vegetables. I generally put everything (except tomatoes, which I absolutely know not to put in the refrigerator) into the refrigerator and promise myself to look up the definitive proper way to store them. Here are the answers I have researched which will give you guidelines on produce storage.

Morning is recommended by most professionals as the best time to harvest, as this is when vegetables will have the highest water content. Cool or cloudy days are another good time to harvest your crops. Fruits and vegetables produce ethylene gas, some more than others. This gas speeds up the ripening process of other produce. You can store fruit and vegetables separately from ripe produce if you don’t want to hasten the ripening process.

Tomatoes: Harvest tomatoes when they are truly full-colored and firm. Store at room temperature. Cool temperatures cause tomatoes to lose flavor and texture, so never store them in the refrigerator (unless, of course, they are overripe and won’t keep otherwise).

Potatoes: You can harvest potatoes whenever they reach the size you want. You don’t have to wait for signs of full maturity when the stems and leaves turn brown. For storing potatoes, the skins must be tough and not peel off easily when you rub them lightly. At harvest, leave the potatoes outside to dry for a couple of hours. You don’t need to clean them for storage other than to gently wipe off soil. Keep them in complete darkness after they are dried off. They will turn green if you leave them in a container that can be penetrated by light. Some recommend curing the potatoes for a couple of weeks in the dark in a single layer on newspapers at around 50-60 degrees F and then placing them in dark boxes or bags at about 40 degrees F.

Onions: Onions can be harvested when they are big enough to use as green onions at perhaps 10 to 12 inches tall.. Mature onions (bulbs) are ready for harvest when the tops turn yellow and start to fall over. Carefully lift the bulbs out of the ground and remove soil but don’t wash them. Let the onions dry in a well ventilated, dry area for a couple of weeks (not in direct sunlight). When the outer skins are papery and brittle and the tops are withered, cut the tops off somewhat and put the onions in mesh bags - or braid the tops and hang them. Keep in a cool dry spot.

Hardneck Garlic: Harvest when the majority of the leaves begin to turn brown and flop over. Pull a test bulb and make sure that the protective papery skin is formed and that the bulb is segmented into easily separated cloves. If not, wait a couple of weeks and recheck. Do not expose the bulbs to sun. Lightly brush off dirt and store in a well ventilated area. If the bulbs are stored below 40 degrees F they will try to sprout, so don’t store in the refrigerator. You can hang the bulbs or store them on a rack or in a mesh bag. The garlic scapes produced as the garlic matures can be used in cooking and some recommend clipping the scapes to hasten garlic development. Wait a couple of weeks after clipping the scapes to check for harvest readiness. Hardneck garlic can be eaten raw at harvest or left to fully mellow for four to six weeks before use.

Corn: Corn is ready to be picked if a kernel is full of juice when you puncture it with your fingernail. The husk should still be green, but the silk should be brown. You should literally have the water boiling before you go out to pick the corn! This is when you will have the absolute sweetest, fullest flavor. Corn will begin to lose its flavor within ten minutes of picking, so pick only as much as you will use at a meal. Some recommend putting a teaspoon of sugar in the boiling pot before adding the corn for the best flavor.

I have not dealt with melons in this article, as the season in the High Sierra is not long enough or generally hot enough to produce a melon crop - believe me I have tried! The same is generally true for winter squash, though I have planted Butternut Squash this year in hopes of a longer season. At any rate, the plants are pretty in the garden.

Taking into consideration that everyone, of course, has their own theories and experience, these guidelines and individual conditions will always be a factor to consider in storing your garden harvest.

Street Talk

No comments present
You May Also Like
Food Storage Tips for Your Emergency Kitchen
In my last article, Extreme Couponing without Being Extreme, I told you how to get the most for your money and recommended building a stockpile. Now that you have decided to build a stockpile you need to learn what foods are best for storage and how to store them. Storing…
By: Nancy Aymond in  Food and Drink  >  Cooking Tips   Jan 24, 2012  
  Likes: 1

Raw Fruits And Vegetables Are The Original Diet for All Animals (including Man)
Raw Fruits and Vegetables… The Original diet for all animals (including man)… From the beginning of time there were always an abundant of raw foods, fruits and vegetables. This is what early man and any other life form survived on. I can’t say when exactly and I’m not sure if…
By: Randolph Euin in  Health and Fitness  >  Nutrition   Feb 23, 2012  
  Likes: 7

How to Know What to Eat - Part 3
If you are choosing more whole and organic foods for yourself and your family, that is very well done! These are definitely the two key concepts you need to know about deciding what to eat. This next concept may be a stretch for some of you--I know it was for…
By: Patty Allread in  Health and Fitness  >  Nutrition   May 08, 2012  
  Likes: 3

How to Lose Weight And Stay Healthy
There are no secrets to losing weight – and maintaining the weight loss -quickly. Various advertisements may promote wonderful new diets or pills that will miraculously eradicate those extra pounds. However, these quick fixes are unlikely to solve the problem in the long term and may lead to dissatisfaction and…
By: Eve K.  in  Health and Fitness  >  Weight Loss   Apr 03, 2012  
  Likes: 0

Eating Healthy For The Cheap
Are you a college student trying to save money? Do you wanna lose weight without starving yourself? Wanna keep that nice butt of yours or get six pack abs? Well this is the article for you. While I won't be promising you six pack abs what I will be promising…
By: Kris-H in  Health and Fitness  >  Weight Loss   Mar 09, 2013  
  Likes: 1

Antioxidants In Fruits And Vegetables
Health and Benefits of the Seed And God said "See, I have given you every herb that yields seed which is on the face of all the earth, and every tree whose fruit yields seed; "to you it shall be for food. He didn't say; man must create it. We…
By: Frankie Hernandez SR in  Health and Fitness  >  Nutrition   Dec 28, 2011  
  Likes: 2

Hazardous Chemicals In Fruits And Vegetables
Have you ever wondered how many chemicals are in the food that we consume everyday? From fast foods to sodas and meats,the number is huge.The pesticides that are used to spray fruits and vegetables to rid them of pests is huge.Taking precautions before you eat will go a long way…
By: Duncan wahome in  Food and Drink  >  Low Calorie   Mar 28, 2011  
  Likes: 1

Foods to Eat to Lose Belly Fat
Alright this should be easy, I just sat down with my deep fried burrito, 64 oz coke and my strawberry cheese cake. I am going to explain to you in this article of what foods to eat to lose belly fat. So let’s get started!I love deep fried burritos, coca…
By: Travis in  Health and Fitness  >  Weight Loss   Nov 01, 2011  
  Likes: 0

Add Fruits and Vegetables
What's for Dinner Dinner was being prepared and there was the pot roast cooking in the crock pot. We need to add fruits and vegetables to make this meal more complete and tasty. We know about the food pyramid, but why is it so important to add the fruits and…
By: Jerry Steege in  Health and Fitness  >  Weight Loss   Mar 01, 2011  
  Likes: 1

Surgery is A Horrific Way to Get Rid Of Cankles!
It is amazing that in this day and age of what people will do in order to make themselves look better. Don't get me wrong, I am a huge believer in self improvement, but actually going under a knife that risks my health is a little too extreme if you…
By: W.C. Rodrigue in  Health and Fitness  >  Foot Health   Jan 16, 2013  
  Likes: 1

How to Make Your Baby Sick-proof
You might read the title to this article and think to yourself "how to make my baby sick-proof? Well, my baby doesn't get sick ....." Well, the truth of the matter is that, sooner or later, they will. Whether it's when they start daycare (to all us working moms out…
By: Tatiana in  Home and Family  >  Babies Toddler   Aug 29, 2011  
  Likes: 1

Benefits Of Raw Food Juicing
The wonderful benefits of raw food juicing are almost uncountable. Juicing raw foods allows us to drink far more of those highly nutritious foods as opposed to eating them. Plus its a great way to introduce children and even adults to fruits and vegetables they may not like the look…
By: RawFoodJohn in  Health and Fitness  >  Weight Loss   Jul 17, 2013  
  Likes: 0

Cửa Cổng Biệt Thự đẹp Sang Trọng
Bạn đã biết đến sản phẩm chất lượng của Cổng nhôm đúc Thịnh Vượng House qua kênh thông tin nào. Tại sao khách hàng biết đến chúng tôi đã không còn quan trọng bằng việc tại đây quý khách đã chọn được những mẫu cổng nhà biệt thá»± đẹp trong…
By: thinhvuonghouse in  Home and Family  >  Gardening   Jun 06, 2016  
  Likes: 0

5 Tips for Better Shrub Care
Previously, shrubs were thought of as back-garden plant perfect for filling up free space. Presently, they are featured as focal points of landscaping projects due to the rich colours and beautiful flower displays. If you are after introducing shrubs to your garden, but you are not sure what gardening service…
By: melissagreen in  Home and Family  >  Gardening   Jun 02, 2016  
  Likes: 0

Cửa Nhôm đúc Sang Trọng Và đẳng Cấp
Chính bởi khả năng truyền tải thần thái và phong cách riêng của chủ nhà và không đơn giản là cánh cá»­a bảo vệ cho ngôi nhà của bạn, cá»­a nhôm đúc luôn được chọn lá»±a rất kÄ© lưỡng trước khi lắp đặt. Bạn đã lá»±a chọn được mẫu cá»­a…
By: thinhvuonghouse in  Home and Family  >  Gardening   May 30, 2016  
  Likes: 0

Article Views: 1712    Report this Article