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Harvesting Peaches, Apples and Pears

Harvest season is upon us. Whether you grew your own fruit or visit a pick-your-own farm, knowing when to harvest will provide the best flavor and nutritional value.

Harvest peaches and plums when they are fully colored, sweet and juicy. Harvesting at this stage of full maturity insures the best flavor, but minimizes storage time to several weeks in the refrigerator.

Pick apples just before they reach maturity. This is when the indentation at the stem end turns from green to yellow. Ripe fruit easily pulls off the branch without breaking the stem.

Harvest pears before they start falling from the tree. Remove the fruit when they turn from a dark green to yellowish green. The spots on the skins, called lenticels, should turn from white to brown.

Harvest ripe apples and pears by holding the fruit in the palm of your hand, twist, lift and pull.

A bit more information:  Store apples and pears in a cool location with good air circulation. Don’t line the boxes or wrap the fruit because good air flow is a must. A spare refrigerator makes a great storage location.

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