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What’s in this spring?

Updated: Mar 12, 2020

After a long winter, there’s nothing more welcoming than the sight of spring’s first vegetables: Crisp lettuces, earthy mushrooms, slender spears of asparagus, leafy spring onions, fresh peas, and green beans, and piles of bright rhubarb join year-round staples like garlic and beets as well as winter favorites nearing the end of their season. Below is a list of fruits and vegetables to look for this season as well as some expert tips for buying the best of spring’s bounty!

  1. Spring Peas: Peas should be tender and the pod plump.

  2. Blackberries: Ripe berries are large, plump, and deeply colored.

  3. Swiss Chard: Harvest leaves under 4 inches and when tender.

  4. Strawberries: Berries will have an even deep red all around.

  5. Celery: Ripe when the stalks are 6 inches in length and clustered together.

  6. Parsnips: Roots should be 1 to 2 inches wide and 8 to 12 inches long.

  7. Beets: Best when harvested young, smaller than 6 inches.

  8. Leeks: Harvest when stalks are around an inch wide.

  9. Oranges: Ripe when the fruit has a firm texture with thin, smooth skin.

  10. Carrots: Mature carrots will have a firm and tender texture.

  11. Broccoli: Ready when the buds of the heard are firm and tight.

  12. Rutabaga: Ripe when it is smooth and has purple-tinged skin.

  13. Cauliflower: Ready when the heads are compact, white, and firm.

  14. Avocado: Ripe when it has a slight sponginess to it and is dark in color.

  15. Raspberries: Ripe berries are plump, large, and brightly colored.

  16. Peaches: Ready to each when the color is deep golden.

  17. Mushrooms: Freshest right after the veil breaks open.

  18. Asparagus: Ready when spears are deep green or violet tinted.

  19. Brussels Sprouts: Ready when the heads are firm and 1 to 2 inches.

  20. Rhubarb: Freshest when the stalks are at least 10 inches long.

  21. Cabbage: The heads should be firm all the way though when squeezed.

  22. Bok Choy: Leaves may be anywhere from 6 inches to 2 feet when ready.

  23. Radishes: Fresher when harvested young, roots no wider than an inch.

  24. Artichoke: Look for a firm bulb with tightly closed inner petals.

  25. Lettuce: Leaves will be well-ruffled and deeply lobed when mature.

  26. Plums: Ripe when texture is semi-soft has a deep, even color.

  27. Zucchini: Will be a deep green and around 6 to 8 inches in length.

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