Grow. Nourish. Connect.


How To Store Your Fresh Vegetables

grow nourish

Whether you grow your own fresh fruit and vegetables at home, or buy them from organic and sustainable local producers, learning how to store them correctly is essential. Food waste is a major problem – but one that we as individuals can all do something about. Learning how to store your fresh produce is just one of the things you can do to cut food waste and make a real difference.


How Can You Store Fresh Vegetables & Fruits?

Many fruits and vegetables can be kept at room temperature or in your refrigerator for a few days. But what if you want to store them for longer? Here are some of the options to consider


As A Gardener – Keep crops in the Ground

Certain crops will keep better if you keep them in the ground rather than trying to store them indoors. Some, like leeks and root vegetables, for example, can be left in the growing areas even once they are ready, and harvested as and when you need them.


Store Vegetables in Your Home

Some fresh, harvested vegetables can be stored in your home over winter.  Pumpkins and squash can be stored on shelves in a cool, dark location, often for a number of months. Crops like onion and garlic can be braided and hung in a well-ventilated spot out of direct light. 

Remember, a cool and unheated space will be best – a dedicated cold store or pantry is ideal. But a spare room, or garage might also work.  If such a space is not available, consider creating your own small, well-insulated cupboard for vegetable storage. The insulation will allow you to create more suitable conditions, even in warmer climates.


Create a Root Cellar to Store Your Vegetables

Not many of us are lucky enough to have a space below our homes that can be used as a root cellar. But you might be able to make a root cellar in your garden. An underground or earth-sheltered root cellar provides optimal conditions to store things like potatoes and root vegetables for longer. 

The space can be a simple insulated box in the ground, or a whole underground room. How big and complex you can go will of course depend on your budget and the space available. But if you grow a lot of your own food, and struggle to store it all longer term, this could be an interesting option to consider.


Freezing Vegetables

Of course, not all vegetables will store well for long. But things like greens can, if you have space in your freezer, be placed in boiling water briefly (blanched) then frozen. And many other fruits and vegetables will be fine to freeze fresh, or cooked.


Canning Fruits & Vegetables

Freezing is easy, but you won't necessarily have space in your freezer for all the food you want to store – especially if you have a productive garden. Canning can be the solution. This is simply the name given to processing food then storing it in glass jars or bottles with sealed lids. 

Hot water bath canning is used only for high acid foods. If you want to preserve green vegetables then you will need a pressure canner to do so safely. Follow pressure canning recipes precisely to avoid any incidents or potential harm. Get it right though, and you can store your produce in those sealed jars for quite some time.



If you enjoyed reading that, you'll surely love our Shambhala Living Podcast too..

Listen to Shambhala Living Podcast Now

S t a y   C o n n e c t e d

We'd love to share more about our food growing and regenerative living tips, ideas and visions for a new future.