This time of year, many Iowa gardens are overflowing with produce. But in the heat of the summer, just about everything can wilt, including your fresh produce! Here are some tips for harvesting and storing your fruits, herbs, and vegetables to keep them crisp and fresh.
Tips for Harvesting
- Picking your vegetables early in the morning will help your produce stay crisp, and it will last longer in the refrigerator. Later in the day, moisture from the veggies and herbs has evaporated from the heat, which can lead to wilted and mushy produce.
- If you must harvest later in the day, choose evening hours, and be sure to get your produce into the refrigerator quickly.
Tips for Storing
- Wash fruits and veggies just before use. Washing in advance encourages mold and spoilage.
- Use the crisper section of your refrigerator, which maintains higher humidity.
- Berries, cherries, melons, peppers and mushrooms do best in a dry, covered container on a warmer shelf in the refrigerator.
- Tomatoes, onions and potatoes should be kept outside the refrigerator in a cool, dry place.
- Try freezing herbs in ice cube trays for use in soups or stews.
Do you have any tips or tricks to harvesting or storing your produce? Share in the comments section below!