How to Harvest

Coriander

equipment bare hands

Coriander needs to be harvested regularly to stop plants from bolting and going to seed. This happily means you will have a regular supply of aromatic fresh foliage as well as a healthy plant that regenerates itself and lasts for longer. The trick is to cut the top third from a plant and leave the bottom two-thirds to re-grow. Usually doing this about once a week works for established plants. Just cut horizontally across the plant with scissors or a sharp knife. You can of course also just gab a few stems every day or so too. Fresh coriander is undoubtedly the best when it comes to flavor but it can be easily be frozen and stored in a plastic ziplock bag for later use. Allow a few plants to flower and they’ll attract bees, parasitoid wasps and hoverflies into your garden. These plants can then self-seed and reward you with yet more plants in the seasons to come. You can also dry and save the seeds for use in the kitchen too.

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How to Harvest

Zucchini

equipment Knife

Zucchini taste sweetest and have the best texture when they are about the length of your hand. Take care not to damage stems when you harvest – the easiest way is to take a sharp knife and cut through the thick stem that connects the fruit to the main stem. This should leave about a fingertip length of stem attached to the Zucchini. Resist the urge to try and pull them off by hand as they often just snap in half. Keep picking and the plant will keep producing. Scour your plants to make sure you don’t miss any fruits - if you leave your Zucchini too long then they’ll turn into marrows – which can be nice, depends on your taste. Always good for a spot of chutney! Zucchini are best stored in a cool place at room temperature and should be god for at least a week. Apparently refrigerating them can cause them to age prematurely. If you do want to put them in the fridge then place them in the crisper draw if you have one.

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How to Harvest

Plum

equipment Bare hands, ladder with someone to steady it for you

Depending on variety and weather you can be picking plums from late spring through to early autumn. Taste is a good enough indicator of ripeness but generally fruit are ripe when the develop fully-coloured, soft skins and they give slightly when squeezed. Plums should come off the tree quite easily with just a quick twist. If you are in any doubt keep an eye on birds that will descend onto trees in numbers as soon as fruit are ready. Handle fruit carefully when harvesting to prevent bruising. Line your bucket or basket with soft material such as cloth or newspaper. Plums store well in the fridge for 2 to 4 weeks or they can be sliced and stoned before freezing or dried whole to make prunes. They also make fantastic jams and preserves.

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SEASONAL RECIPES

Roasted veal with baby radish, zucchini and buffalo yoghurt

Simple and fresh use of some of summer's best ingredients

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SEASONAL RECIPES

Potato gnocchi with goats ricotta, asparagus, pistachios & parsley emulsion

If you're a new potato buff you'll love this ...

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