As the harvesting duties start to pile up I needed an easy way to clean vegetables before bringing them into the house for processing. Cleaning dirt out of the kitchen sink is never fun and after trying to hold the hose and the vegetables at the same time I figured there must be a better way…

I found an old metal washtub on legs at the local secondhand store. But just sloshing them around inside didn’t make sense because they didn’t get really clean.

After searching around I found a couple of things to make it easier. First, using a plastic plant tray to harvest helped to sift out the dirt back into the beds before taking them to the wash basin. Keeping the soil in the beds is a good thing since it took so long to get that lovely soil to be lovely soil.

Second, using a board across the top ½ of the basin gave me a shelf to set the harvest on while I work and a place to sit while it dries out. You can also use the tray to keep vegs from shifting in the standing water. A hose on spray will knock most of the dirt into the water while a soft vegetable scrub brush might be needed to get the root veg really clean. Some Vegs do not like to be totally dried off before storage including, leafy things, some cucumbers, and kale. As soon as they are mostly dry (don’t leave them out for days) store them as they would normally be stored.

I store leafy greens and kale in clean plastic bags slightly moist. Cucumbers like to be slightly moist and carrots, leeks and beets humid but dry. Hang the onions and garlic to dry or store in baskets. Tomatoes, eat or process when you can refrigerate until used. I also dry my hot peppers, basil, thyme and dill by hanging them in bundles inside the greenhouse (unheated and not humid yet) or in the house.

Remember to use your water wisely.  Collect the dirty water into buckets or watering can to be added back into the garden. Don’t let it just run onto the ground.

How are you processing your harvest this year?  Be sure to share back any ideas you have had for making harvesting easier.

Happy Vegetables make Happy Bodies!