Harvesting Vegetables - Knowledgebase Question

Sydney, Au
Avatar for menn
Question by menn
February 17, 1998
How can I find out when you are meant to harvest vegetables? Is there a web page with this information? Eg. do you pull potatoes before or after flowering, how do you know when a chili is fully grown, etc. I know this should be common sense but I am young and my parents are hopeless gardeners.

Answer from NGA
February 17, 1998
Try the Time-Life Plant Encyclopedia at:


I just searched using the word "potato" and it gave complete instructions on how to grow, when to harvest, etc.

By the way, you usually harvest potatoes when they have begun to flower. You can begin to harvest small potatoes earlier in the season--if you are careful and pull the small potatoes from the perimeter, you can let the remaining ones continue to grow. I often wait to harvest my potatoesuntil the plants have finished flowering and are beginning to die back--I'm too busy with the rest of the crops!

You can harvest and eat green chilies any time, or you can wait until they ripen to their mature color--usually red. Once they begin to ripen, they won't grow in size, so you can decide whether to pick or to wait.

Welcome to gardening! Don't feel that these things should be "common sense"--we all had to learn in one way or another. And any gardener will tell you that one of the great things about gardening, no matter how "experienced" you are, is that there's always more to learn--it's never boring. Feel free to ask questions via the web site, and we'll hunt down an answer for you.

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