All dedicated gardeners want to know when the optimal time is to harvest your garden. Vegetables have different harvest timetables for ensuring the most delicious produce. You’ve worked hard to get your garden where it is. You may have even gotten a head start with seeds while the weather was still too cool for outdoor planting. Planting seedlings indoors to prepare for spring can benefit certain vegetables while not others. If you have the time, space for indoor seedlings, and gardening enthusiasm won’t let you wait, try peppers, tomatoes, cauliflower, and broccoli.
At 410 Lawn Guy, we understand the importance of a beautiful landscape and enjoying a stellar garden. Read on for some pointers for picking some produce favorites at the best times.
Tomato Harvesting Pointers
The sheer ecstasy of biting into a perfectly ripened, homegrown tomato is one of the greatest pleasures on earth. Picking them too early, while still tasty, doesn’t do it. Did you plant cherry tomatoes? Those sweet little morsels might not even make it into the kitchen. Cherry tomatoes are pretty prolific, come in numerous colors, and often reseed themselves the following season from fruit that fell unnoticed. Heirloom tomatoes also come in a plethora of colors. The choices are mind-boggling. With all tomatoes, you’ll know they are ripe when they reach their fully developed color. They’ll also release quickly from their stems. Generally, mid-July through September is when the tomatoes start rolling in. If you still have tomatoes in your garden and the weather is looking frigid, don’t despair. Pull up the plants. Shake off the dirt. Hang them upside down in a dark area. If that doesn’t appeal to you, pick them off the vines and put them in brown bags. They won’t be as delicious, but they will ripen and still taste good.
While cucumbers might not get the limelight the tomato does, they are incredibly versatile. They are easy to grow and will get away from you if you slack once harvest time comes around. They like the heat but will still produce into early fall if you keep picking them. Small cucumbers have bumpy skin. The larger smooth skinned ones are less desirable. Think baby gherkins. When you harvest your garden, cucumbers will be a prolific producer. Pickling cucumbers is easy and a great way to use up the surplus.
When To Harvest Your Garden Melons
Watermelon, honeydew, and cantaloupe melons all reach maturity toward the end of summer through early fall. The foliage starts to brown up a bit, and the tendrils by the stems start drying out. Check the part of the melon resting on the ground, as it will turn yellowish to white instead of green. If your curiosity can’t stand the unknown, pick one and cut it open.
Sweet corn sits center stage at nearly every summer BBQ. Your corn should be “knee high by Fourth of July” and will be ready to harvest mid to late summer. The ears should feel full at the top. The corn silk will start to dry up. The most delightful way to check is to pick an ear of corn when you think it’s game time. Peel it, and take a big bite. You don’t have to cook corn. A pot with 12 ears and an inch of water only needs to boil for three minutes for perfect corn. You can store freshly picked corn in your refrigerator for more than a week if they last that long.
When To Harvest Your Garlic And Onions
Garlic and onions are a much-loved cooking staple in any chef’s repertoire. Call 410 Lawn Guy to take care of your lawn, and you’ll have more time to harvest your garden.
You need to plant garlic in the fall. Plant your onions in the spring. They both have a similar harvest schedule. Pull up one of each when the green tops turn yellow and brown. They should look fully formed and ready for a rinse and the cutting board for your next meal. You can store both in a cool, dry place for months. Grab your crafty friend and braid your garlic to hang and dry.
When it’s time to harvest your garden, 410 Lawn Guy will be there as support staff. We’ll take care of all the other outdoor maintenance issues so you can tend to your delectable garden produce. Happy harvesting!