After a lot of hard work the time has come, time to harvest your garden. I was taught how to can produce when I was still in grade school. I have a lot of memories involving helping my mom make jelly.
Here are a few tips of the best way to store you fruits and veggies to make them last.
1. If you are canning make sure you are doing it right. The dangers of canning improperly are very real. Canning improperly can lead to bacteria in your food which can lead to sickness and botulism. I highly recommend getting the book “Ball’s 100th Anniv. Blue Book Canning Book.”
- If you plan on using a pressure cooker please be very careful. When I was eleven years old my mother and I were making peach jelly, she was using the pressure cooker to heat the jars when the lid sealed without her knowing, she went to take the cover off and ended up with second and third degree burns.
2. Freezing your fruits and veggies are another way to store them for later use. Last year we froze a lot of tomatoes. It was a really simple process, we simply cut the tomatoes in half, put them into the bag and froze them. I like making fresh spaghetti sauce so being able to grab a bag of garden fresh tomatoes from the freezer was great.
- this website has a great step by step guide for freezing: http://www.ehow.com/how_2302765_freeze-fresh-vegetables.html
3. Potatoes will last three to six months if stored properly. When storing your potatoes make sure you clean them first. Then place then in a slotted bin or a loosely woven basket, keep them in a room with good air circulation, that is dark and stays around 40 degrees.
4. Onions and garlic will also last for a long time when properly stored.
- here is a step by step guide for onions : http://www.ehow.com/how_4546386_braid-onions.html
- here is a step by step guide for garlic : http://www.bloomingfieldsfarm.com/garbrdhow.html
5. Another great option for storing your fresh veggies and fruits is to dehydrate them. Before a storm killed my apple tree I made apple chips with the dehydrator and my kids loved them. Dehydrated fruit and veggies last a really long time and it makes a really healthy snack.
- this website has great tips for dehydrating veggies and fruits: http://farmgal.tripod.com/Dehydrate.html