Tips for harvesting better tasting fruits and vegetables

Photo by Iñigo De la Maza from Unsplash

Many gardeners tend to focus on the growing stage of their crops, but paying attention to them during the harvesting stage can also make a large impact on both the flavor and nutrition of the produce. Here are some tips on how to do it. 

Once harvested, crops have very few adaptive abilities that allow them to survive when severed from the parent plant. Vegetables such as broccoli rapidly lose nutrient content as their tissue starts to degrade in a matter of hours. The best way to harvest crops is by immediately placing them in waterproof packaging to prevent moisture loss. Afterward, chill them and consume them as soon as possible. 

Some fruits and roots like tomatoes and strawberries continue to ripen and divert their sources so they can become redder, sweeter, and more aromatic when harvested. Commercially, these plants are refrigerated to extend shelf life. But for the best flavors, skip the chilling and merely wait a day or two before eating. 

Lastly, potatoes and pumpkins are known to dramatically increase both their sugar and flavor compounds when stored in cool conditions a few weeks after harvesting. 

By following these straightforward techniques, gardeners can prevent a loss of flavor from their crops or significantly boost them, thus making the experience of consuming it more satisfactory. 

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