What causes fruits to ripen

Vegetables that ripen after harvest - or not

Post-ripening and non-ripening fruit

When trees and bushes are full of fruit in the garden, when is the best time to harvest? Then when the fruit is really ripe, or when it takes a few more days. The same question arises when shopping in the supermarket: is it better to put ripe fruits in the shopping cart or those that are not quite ripe?

The correct answer to this question depends on the fruit. Because fruit can be divided into two groups with regard to its ripening behavior, into post-ripe and non-ripe fruit.

Why fruit ripens

When fruits ripen, the composition of their ingredients changes. The content of glucose, fructose and sucrose increases so that the fruit becomes sweeter. Most of the time, the starch content also decreases and the color changes due to the breakdown of chlorophyll. Ripe fruits taste particularly sweet and develop their best aroma.

This ripening process is triggered by the plant hormone ethylene. Post-ripening fruit produces ethylene itself, even after the harvest, so that the metabolic processes continue to take place and the fruits continue to ripen after the harvest. The warmer and lighter the fruits are stored, the faster the ripening process takes place. In a low-oxygen, dark, cool place with high humidity, fruits ripen much more slowly.

Fruit that does not ripen

Fruits that do not ripen will only get worse after harvest. Therefore, when buying, you should make sure to buy fruits that are as ripe as possible or only harvest the fruits when they are already fully ripe and no longer have any green spots.

Gooseberries https://freudengarten.de/show/657/stachelbeeren-in-den-garten- Pflanzen


Post-ripening fruits

Fruits that ripen later can be picked if they are not yet fully ripe. They ripen at room temperature and develop almost their full aroma. Fruits that can ripen on the bush or tree still taste a bit better.

These types of fruit ripen after:

Store fruit properly

Fruits that ripen after harvest still produce the plant hormone ethylene and release it into their surroundings. This means that fruits lying next to ripening fruits in the fruit bowl ripen faster or - in the case of non-ripening fruits, age. Apples, bananas and tomatoes give off a particularly large amount of ethylene and should therefore not be placed next to fruit that is not ripening.

Since fruit that does not ripen will only deteriorate, you should store it in a cool and dark place to slow down the aging process.

Tip: If you want harvested fruits to ripen faster, you should place them next to apples or bananas.

Also interesting:

These garden ideas were written by the Freudengarten editorial team.

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