Picking Produce at its Peak: A Gardener’s Summer Celebration
My mother-in-law called me last week and was bursting with excitement. She had picked her first crop of green beans and her first big ripe tomato from her vegetable garden. This is nothing new for her. She’s been gardening for years and years, but the fun of harvesting those first fruits of your summer-long labor of love never gets old.
So what if you’re new to gardening - how do you know when fruits and vegetables are ripe for picking? Knowing when to harvest will guarantee the freshest, most flavorful and nutritious produce from your garden. Here's a good article from Mother Earth News that offers detailed information on how to pick produce at its peak flavor.
Don’t have a garden? The local farmers’ markets are the next best thing to having one in your own backyard and they’re bursting with the best of summer’s bounty right now. Check out this great color-coded guide to find out what’s currently in season and then you can pick up the freshest produce around.
Want to learn how to preserve these great flavors of summer? Join us on Thursday, August 25 at 7 p.m. for the next Growing Green program, “Preserving the Harvest”. Master gardeners from the University of Illinois Extension Service will offer information and handouts on which methods are best for preserving each type of produce.
Check back next week when I’ll share a couple of my favorite recipes using the best of summer’s produce. We’d love to hear about your adventures in gardening either here or on our Facebook page.