Northern & Central Midwest

July, 2012
Regional Report

Pick Green Beans Young

Pick green beans before they reach full size and before their pods begin to dimple from the ripening beans inside. Picking them young gives you better tasting beans and keeps the plants producing more beans for a longer time. Refrigerate picked pods until needed, a maximum of four or five days.

Store Tomatoes and Eggplants at Room Temperature

As you start picking ripe tomatoes, remember to store them at room temperature. Storing tomatoes and eggplants in the refrigerator destroys their flavor and texture. Pick eggplants while their skins are still glossy and have a slight give. Use within a couple of days so they don't turn bitter.

Pick Ripe Elderberries

Watch for ripening elderberries. These towering plants have just finished blooming and their tiny green fruits will ripen quickly. Snip the heavy heads of berries when they fruits are glossy dark purple to black. A few green berries in your juice for jelly will help the jelly set

Check Containers for Moisture

Check containers daily for water needs. In hot drying winds, they may need to be watered every day. Stick your fingers at least two inches into the soil. Container plantings, especially vegetables, will also benefit from mulch to keep the soil moisture even.

Water Deeply

Water long and deeply. If you leave the water on at least an hour in each spot, you will force the roots to go deep instead of staying in the upper layers where they will dry out easily. Make sure to stick your fingers or trowel a couple of inches into the soil when checking for moisture.

Our Mission in Action

Shop Our Holiday Catalog