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Vegetable Growing : Harvesting and Storage

Begin using vegetables as soon as they are big enough, while still immature. Carrots, beetroot, peas, celery, turnips, scallions, lettuce, french beans, courgettes, cabbage, cauliflower and broccoli can be used before they attain full size.

Newly lifted potatoes

Newly lifted potatoes

These are very tasty at an immature stage and using them early helps both to extend the period of use, and avoid gluts. Only pick as much as is needed at a time. Harvest vegetables in the cool of morning.

Many vegetables keep for only a short time after harvesting. Freezing is a possibility with some types – peas, beans, sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, sweet corn, courgettes and tomatoes pulped. Herbs can be frozen in ice cubes.

Root vegetables store well in pits outdoors, protected by a cover of straw and soil, or in a cool shed. This approach is successful with carrots, swedes, turnips, parsnips, beetroot, potatoes and even hard round-headed cabbage. Guard against rats and mice in outdoor pits.

Onions store well when properly dried after harvest. Peas and french beans can be allowed to mature for drying too. Herbs dried slowly store well or they can be frozen loose.

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