How to store green tomatoes so that they turn red
It is not uncommon for a gardener to take an unripe tomato crop, for example, the threat of early frosts. About how to properly store green tomatoes and what to do to make them reddened, preserving their taste, we will discuss this in our material.
Harvesting and sorting
Harvest in dry weather, preferably in the afternoon or in the evening, because in the morning the greens are wet from dew. Green fruits must match the size of ripe, underdeveloped specimens simply rot. Tomatoes of medium-late and late ripening are removed, in the stage of milk and blange maturity.
The fruit should be firm to the touch, without dark and light spots on the skin, without dents or cracks. There should be no blackening around the stalk.
Tomatoes are removed along with the stem, which prolongs the shelf life and reduces the risk of infection by bacteria. At the same time, to avoid accidental damage, the stalk of the stalk is not torn off, but cut off with a garden tool.
It should be noted that the larger the specimen, the faster it will ripen. So that the fruits ripen evenly, they are sorted by size and degree of maturity.
Read also how to store tomatoes at home.
What kind of ripened tomato varieties are suitable for ripening
The most common mistake: to collect tomatoes for storage, not knowing the characteristics of the variety. Many varieties, shot in green, after ripening lose their shape and taste. Instead of tomatoes poured with juice and color, something turns out to be wrinkled and tasteless.
Varieties suitable for ripening at home:
- De Barao
- "Long Keeper";
- Rio Grand;
- “Bull’s heart”;
- varieties of cherry group.
How to store tomatoes: optimal conditions
For long-term storage of fruits you need a certain microclimate.
- a dry room with ventilation (diseases develop in dry stagnant air, tastes deteriorate);
- at a temperature of + 8–12 ° С the shelf life is extended, the redness of the tomato is pushed back;
- if you want a quick ripening, the temperature is increased to + 20–28 ° C;
- humidity - about 80%;
- bright lighting will accelerate ripening, in a dark place the tomatoes will stay green longer.
Where is the best place to store tomatoes
Green tomatoes will deteriorate when stored under adverse conditions. There are several storage options for ripening.
Important! If the stored fruits are transferred to the heads of onions or garlic, then the phytoncides secreted by the cultures will protect the tomatoes from fungal rot.
In this case, only paper bags are used, polyethylene condenses, which is detrimental to tomatoes. Each berry is wiped with alcohol to disinfect the surface of the skin and protect from rot. Then wrapped in a paper towel and put in a bag. If you wish to delay the maturation for a month, the storage temperature is selected at the level of + 13–16 ° С. To reduce this period by half, the fruits are stored at a temperature of + 18–21 ° C.
In the fridge
You can’t store green tomatoes in the refrigerator, they will not ripen under these conditions and lose the structure of the pulp and taste. On the lower shelves of the refrigerator only ripe fruits wrapped in paper are stored. Shelf life - no more than a week.
Boxes are chosen wooden or plastic with a mesh surface. Tomatoes are wrapped in thick paper, each fruit separately. When laying in several layers, you can additionally shift with straw. Dry sawdust or shavings are poured into the tank from above. Important! If the fruits touch each other, this will increase the risk of rot. Periodically, they need to be inspected and removed specimens with darkened skin or soft to the touch.
In glass jars
A proven method for ripening green tomatoes is storage in glass jars. Pure specimens are placed in a container with a banana or apple. The secret is that these fruits secrete ethylene, which contributes to the ripening of the fruit. The jar is closed with a capron lid and left in a dark place. From time to time, the condition of the tomatoes and the fruit stimulant is checked, if necessary, it is replaced with fresh.
On the bushes
An effective way is to store green specimens on the bushes, especially if there are small fruits. The nutrients remaining in the root system and stems will allow small berries to gain the necessary weight.
There are two options for bush storage:
- The first is suitable for late-ripening varieties. The bushes are carefully dug up together with the roots, dug in large containers in a room with room temperature. It is important to maintain moisture in the roots.
- The second is ideal for small-fruited tomatoes, for example, cherry varieties. Bunches of stems with fruits are hung upside down in the room. It is important that the branches do not touch each other, and the room is regularly ventilated.
In artificial light
This method will require energy costs and the presence of a gardener in order to control. The advantage of the method is that the green crop with the threat of approaching cold weather can be ripened without removing from the bushes. In the evening, lighting devices are installed on the beds near the bushes, including them at night until the tomatoes are red. Did you know? Swiss breeder M. Cobert bred an unusual fruit: a hybrid of apple and tomato. The juice of the resulting culture is close to cranberries in taste, in addition, it is used to make cider.
Inexperienced summer residents often make mistakes, leading to sad results.
We bring to your attention useful recommendations from experienced agronomists:
- To let the tomatoes lie longer, a thin layer of wax is applied to the surface of the skin of the tomatoes.
- It is possible to clear fruits from possible phytophthora spores on the peel by lowering the tomatoes for 3 minutes in hot water at a temperature of +60 ° С. After this, you need to dry and wipe the fruits with a dry cloth.
- Put in a drawer no more than 2-3 layers: the more layers, the more difficult it is to inspect them, the higher the risk of infection of all copies from one fruit.
- When storing in several layers, proper styling is important : the stalk of each layer looks in different directions. This will reduce the risk of damage to the skin of the adjacent layer by the sharp remainder of the petiole.
- It is advisable to look at the fruits every 3-4 days.
- To accelerate maturation, you can use an alcohol injection in the area of the stalk. 0.2 ml of vodka is injected into each tomato with a regular syringe.
The advantage of storing unripe fruits is that by increasing or shortening the ripening time, you can get a fresh and tasty tomato by the desired date. Compliance with the basic rules and knowledge of the intricacies of the process will allow you to feast on your favorite vegetable all winter.