Best Time To Harvest Your Vegetables

Best Time To Harvest Your Vegetables


Harvesting Of Vegetables

When it comes to harvesting of vegetables there is no exact guidelines to know when to begin your vegetable harvesting however there in this article Iisted down some rules of thumb may work and can be used as a guide during your vegetable harvesting.

Although most vegetables are best harvested just before full maturity, so as to get the best flavor and taste out of it.

Majority of crops can be harvested severally and The quality of vegetables does not improve when your done harvesting so hence it is necessary to gather crops at proper maturity. In this scenario, vegetables are at their peak for flavor and nutrition.

Taking a deeper dive, the ripe time depends and varies with some vegetables. Tomatoes for example may be left on the vine until fully ripened or taken off when partially ripened and placed on a windowsill to mature. Other crops such as winter squash and watermelon are not ready for harvest until after they are fully matured.

Some steps required while harvesting

Handle Plants with Care

Try as much as possible to Avoid bruising or damaging vegetables as this may cause decay. Stepping on vines or breaking stems creates openings through which diseases can enter the plant hence you have to be very careful, If you find difficulties in harvesting a ripe vegetables from the plant, you can cut them off with a knife.

Stepping on wet foliage can help to spread plant diseases Hence Harvest vegetables when they are dry.

Always Check the garden frequently for ripe produce during harvesting season. Vegetables usually grows and if left too long they are overgrown.

Harvest Time

CABBAGE: The cabbage head will feel solid when gently squeezed. Cabbage needs to be harvested before it reaches maturity, or it will continue to grow and split open.


Harvest when the tops of the carrot show at the soil line, and are 3/4 to 1 inch in diameter. If the diameter looks good, chances are the length is fine too. You may need to pull one to be certain.


 Harvest when the central head is fully formed, white and smooth, but before any sign of yellowing appears/ buds open and flower.


Begin harvesting when spears are 6-8 inches tall and about as thick as your small finger. Snap them off at ground level and new spears will continue to grow. Stop harvesting about 4-6 weeks after the initial harvest.


 Pick before the you can see the seeds bulging. They should snap easily into two. Harvesting begins 2 weeks after First Bloom. Check daily. It doesn't take long for beans to go from tender to tough.


You can harvest and eat the green tops that you thin out of the rows. Beets are really a matter of personal preference when it comes to the right size for harvesting, but many people harvest after roots protrude at soil line, and are 1 1/4 to 2 inches in diameter.


 About 3 weeks after the silks form, they will turn dry and brown. The kernels should exude a milky substance when squeezed.


Check daily and harvest young. Proper harvesting size is determined by product use. Pickles: Sweets are 1 1/2 to 2 inches long; dills are 3 to 4 inches long. Fresh slicing are 7 to 9 inches long and a bright dark green. Leave a short piece of stem on each fruit. Over ripe cucumbers can be very bitter or pithy, even before they start to turn yellow.


 You should harvest when flower head is fully developed, but before the flowers begin to open. Don't expect your home grown broccoli to get to the size of supermarket heads. Cut 6 to 7 inches below the flower head, and side heads will develop after main head is cut.


The sprouts will mature from the bottom up. You can begin harvesting once the sprouts are at least an 1 to 1 1/2 inches in diameter, by twisting off or cutting the sprout from the stem.


 Slightly immature fruits taste best. The fruits should be firm and bright purple to black in color. Cut rather than pull from the plant.


 Kale leaves can be throughout the season. They should be a deep green with a firm, sturdy texture. Kale flavor is best in cooler weather.


Harvest once the head feels full and firm with a gentle squeeze. Hot weather will cause it to bolt or go to seed rather than filling out.


Harvest the outer leaves one the plant has reached about 4 inches in height. Allow the younger, inner leaves to grow. Leaf lettuce can be harvested in this fashion for most of the summer.


 There are many varieties of melon, but a general rule of thumb is that the color should change to beige and the fruit will ‘slip’ from the vine when lifted. You should also be able to notice a sweet smell when ripe.


 Onions can be dug once the tops have ripened and fallen over. Allow the onions to dry in the sun.


Parsnips taste best if they are left in the ground until after a frost or two. They can be left in the ground over the winter and harvested in the spring. In cold areas, they should be mulched for the winter.


The pea pods should look and feel full. Peas are sweeter if harvested before fully plumped. Peas really need to be tasted to determine if they are sweet enough.


 Radishes mature quickly. Harvest when the shoulders popping out of soil line are 1/2 to 1 1/2 inches in diameter. If left too long, they will become tough and eventually go to seed.


In many cases, “new” potatoes are ready 60 to 90 days from planting, depending upon the weather and the potato variety. One sign that young potatoes are ready is the formation of flowers on the plants. At this stage, the potatoes are usually less than 2 inches in diameter. For mature potatoes, wait 2 to 3 weeks after the plant's foliage has died back. The tops of the plants need to have completely died before you begin harvesting. Cut browning foliage to the ground and wait 10 to 14 days before harvesting to allow the potatoes to develop a thick enough skin.


 The bulbs should be about 3 inches in diameter, generally about 3 months after setting out. Rutabagas can be mulched, left in the ground and dug up as needed. Cold weather improves their flavor.


 As with leaf lettuce. Cut the outer leaves and allow the center to continue growing.


 Harvest by cutting all the leaves off at the base of the plant when they are 4 to 6 inches long. New leaves will then grow, giving you more harvests.


Pick young and check often. The skins should be tender enough to poke your fingernail through. Zucchini is harvested when 1 1/2 inches in diameter, and about 4 to 8 inches long.


Color is a good indicator of winter squash maturity. When the squash turns the color it is supposed to be, cut from the vine. Do not let winter squash be exposed to frost.


 Harvest tomatoes 5 to 8 days after they are fully colored and slightly soft to the touch. Gently twist and pull from the vine.


 The turnip shoulders should be about 2 to 2 ½ inches in diameter at the soil line, when ready. Harvest once they reach maturity. Overripe turnips become woody.


 The white spot on the bottom of the melon should change to a deep yellow when ripe. When thumped, It should make a hollow sound when ripe.


Harvesting of vegetables is one of the simplest activities to engage in when it comes to farming, however if you don't do it well you'll end up causing implications which will affect the vegetables.
I hope this article has been able to cover majority of vegetable harvesting techniques.

Post a Comment