A Quick and Dirty Guide to Raising Vegetables in Southcentral Alaska Step 5:Harvest and Storage

Harvest:

Check out the back of your seed packets to see when you should harvest.

Additionally, here are some other tips:

  • Broccoli side shoots should be harvested regularly to promote more side shoots.
  • Carrots can wait until we’ve had a few frosts, but make sure your carrots have been thinned to 2-3” apart. Otherwise, you’ll have tiny carrots.
  • Zucchini cannot survive a frost, but cabbages and kale do fine.
  • Things like spinach and radishes will bolt (go to seed) practically overnight, and are no longer very tasty.
  • Cabbage will split open if left in the garden too long.
  • Lettuce tends to get bitter if left in the garden too long.
  • Harvest pumpkins just before the first frost. Keep on a window ledge, and they will turn orange by Halloween.

Storage:

For most crops, they colder it is and the higher the humidity, the better. Carrots, cabbage, rutabagas, and turnips all follow these guidelines. Other crops like garlic and onions like it cool and dry. To store my carrots, I put them in Ziploc bags with the tops open and put them in my refrigerator. They last forever like that. Root cellars, crawl spaces, or garages can all be used. Make sure to check your crops often and immediately get rid of any spoiled items. Also, if your crops are starting to turn soft, it’s time to make a big pot of vegetable soup.

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