Picking Vegetables

For a lot of gardeners and vegetable growers, harvesting is a task which requires the right timing. But how can you tell if it is the right time to pick those luscious greens from your backyard? It largely depends on the vegetable. Here is a list of vegetables and their features when they are ready for picking.

  • Green Beans are most tender when their seeds are one-quarter of the normal size.
  • Broccolis are ready to be cut if the heads are big but still tight. Small side shoots will develop for weeks afterwards.
  • Cabbage can be harvested once the heads are full but have not started to split. You can pull on the head until some upper roots snap in order to delay splitting.
  • In order to keep the Cauliflower white, you need to tie the outer leaves above the heads when they start to get big. You can harvest them a week or two later.
  • Corn can be harvested if the silks are brown, and the ears feel full. To make sure, peel back the husk and poke a kernel. They should feel tender.
  • Cucumbers should be picked before they mature. This is when the spines are still soft and the seeds are half-sized.
  • An eggplant should be bright, shiny, and full-grown for picking.
  • For leaf crops such as spinach and lettuce, you can harvest some of their leaves continuously, and they will keep producing as long as the weather permits.
  • In picking your Okras, you need two to three-inch-long pods that are easy to snap.
  • When it comes to Shell peas, you need the pods to be light-green and filled out.
  • For Snow peas, the pods are full-sized but not filled out.
  • For Sweet peppers, the fruits should be firm and full.
  • To see if a potato is ready to be harvested, you need to look if the tops have died down and the ground is dry.
  • A ready summer squash should be young and tender.
  • Tomatoes should be fully colored but have not turned soft.

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