Tips on How to Pick and Store Your Vegetables


-Pick all your vegetables in the coolest weather you can. Cloudy days, early mornings, and evenings are always best.
-Use a clean, sharp knife to cut your vegetables from the plant. Be gentle when you handle your crops so they don't bruise.
-Use clean containers to put your crops in.

Some vegetables are still good a long time after you pick them. That is why it is important to pick and store these common vegetables first:

Cabbage. Pick cabbage when the heads are firm. Keep them cold and moist. Cabbage will spoil after about five months.
Carrots. Pick carrots when the tops are one inch around. Take the tops off the carrots. Keep them cold and moist. Carrots will spoil after about eight months.
Garlic. Pick garlic when about half the leaves are yellow. Dry bulbs at room temperature for about two to four weeks. Store them under dry and cold conditions. Garlic will spoil after about four months.
Onions. Pick onions when their necks are tight and their scales are dry. First store them dry at room temperature for two to four weeks. Then store onions dry and cold, but do not freeze. Onions will spoil after about four months.
Potatoes. Pick potatoes when the vines die. Keep them cold and moist and away from the light. Potatoes will spoil after about six months.

Other crops will spoil soon after you pick them. That is why it is important to pick and store these vegetables last:

Basil. Pick basil when the leaves are tender. Put stems in water. Keep at room temperature. Basil will spoil after about five days.
Beans (snap). Pick snap beans two to three weeks after the plant blooms. Keep them moist and cool, but not cooler than 40 degrees. Beans will spoil after about one week.
Cauliflower. Pick cauliflower when the heads are still white. Keep them cold and moist. Cauliflower will spoil after about three weeks.
Corn (sweet). Pick sweet corn when the silks are dry and brown. Check a kernel by cutting it open with your thumbnail. If the inside of the kernel is milky, it is the right picking time. Keep corn cold and moist. Corn will spoil after about five days.
Cucumbers. Pick cucumbers when they are six inches long. Keep them cool but not colder than 40 degrees. Do not store cucumbers with apples, pears or tomatoes that have ethylene. This makes the cucumber taste bad. Cucumbers will spoil after about one week.
Eggplant. Pick eggplant when their color is bright. Keep them cool but not cooler than 50 degrees. Eggplant will spoil after about one week.
Lettuce. Pick lettuce while the leaves are tender. Keep leaves cold and moist. Lettuce will spoil after about one week.
Peas. Pick peas while the pods are still tender. Keep them cold and moist. Peas will spoil after about one week.
Peppers. Pick peppers when they are the size and color you want. Keep them cool but not cooler than 45 degrees. Peppers will spoil after about two weeks.
Radishes. Pick radishes when the roots are up to 1 and 1/4 inches around. Take the tops off the radishes. Keep them cold and moist. Radishes will spoil after about one month.
Spinach. Pick spinach while the leaves are still tender. Keep the leaves cold and moist. Spinach will spoil after about ten days.
Squash (summer). Pick summer squash when they are four to six inches long. Keep them cool. Summer squash will spoil after about one week.
Tomatoes (red). Pick red tomatoes when they are pink or red all over. Keep cool but do not refrigerate. Tomatoes will spoil after about five days.

National Women's Health Week


What is National Women's Health Week?

National Women’s Health Week is a weeklong health observance coordinated by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office on Women’s Health. It brings together communities, businesses, government, health organizations, and other groups in an effort to promote women’s health. The theme for 2012 is “It’s Your Time.” National Women’s Health Week empowers women to make their health a top priority. It also encourages women to take the following steps to improve their physical and mental health and lower their risks of certain diseases:

Why celebrate National Women's Health Week?

We all have a role to play in women’s health. Women often serve as caregivers for their families, putting the needs of their spouses, partners, children, and parents before their own. As a result, women’s health and well-being becomes secondary. As a community, we have a responsibility to support the important women we know and do everything we can to help them take steps for longer, healthier, and happier lives.
Women can easily take charge of their health, thanks to the Affordable Care Act, a landmark health care reform law enacted in 2010. This law gives Americans greater choice and better control over their own health care and includes changes that are especially meaningful to women and their families. For instance, new plans cover vital preventive services, including mammograms, colon cancer screenings, and well-woman visits with no out-of-pocket costs. It also ensures women can see an OB-GYN without a referral. To learn more about the law and your health insurance options, visit HealthCare.gov.

When is National Women's Health Week?

The 13th annual National Women’s Health Week kicks off on Mother’s Day, May 13, 2012 and is celebrated until May 19, 2012. National Women’s Checkup Day is Monday, May 14, 2012.