What to do to make picked tomatoes turn red faster

Reasons why tomatoes do not have time to ripen

In addition to the fact that early cold weather prevents tomatoes from turning red in the garden, there are a number of factors that prevent vegetables from ripening on time:

  • A variety unsuitable for a given climate;
  • Improper care of tomatoes;
  • Late planting of seedlings in the ground;
  • Lack of sunlight.

In any case, whatever the reason that the tomatoes did not ripen on time, the fruits must be preserved, because this is more than one day’s work. You can help the tomatoes ripen outside, or you can pick them and let them turn red at home.

How to store green tomatoes so they turn red

For storage, regardless of the timing, the fruits are sorted. Those that have damage or brown spots are immediately rejected

It is important that the tomatoes are firm and firm. Even a slight bruise will cause the tomato to quickly rot.

Slightly wilted fruits will also not be stored for long. Green tomatoes are best stored when they are large to medium in size. Small fruits also need to be discarded.

It is best to store unripe tomatoes in a dark room with little humidity. Exposure to sunlight is not recommended

It is also very important to maintain a certain temperature regime

When you need to speed up the process, it is raised, but if you need to keep the tomatoes green, then the temperature should be lowered.

  • For example, at a temperature of +25°C, fruits can ripen in a week.
  • At +15°C, the ripening period extends to 12 – 15 days.
  • If the temperature does not exceed +10°C, the tomatoes can remain as green as they were for up to two months.

If you harvest in October and store it at the right temperature, you can ensure that fresh tomatoes are on the holiday table for the New Year holidays.

Ripening period Temperature
About a week+ 25°C
12-15 days+15°С
Up to two months+10°С

To do this, it is enough to increase the temperature by 5 degrees before the New Year, and in two weeks you will get red fresh tomatoes. Varieties that do not have too large fruits are stored at +10°C for up to 3 months.

Before deciding under what conditions to store tomatoes, they are sorted by degree of ripening.

  • Absolutely green fruits are stored at temperatures from +8°C to +12°C.
  • As for tomatoes that have already turned red in some part, they can be stored for up to 1 month at a temperature of +4°C to +6°C.
  • Completely red fruits can be kept at +2°C for up to 5 - 6 weeks.

Storage location for green tomatoes

If, nevertheless, bad weather finds unripe fruits in the garden, then the best solution is to remove them from the bushes and leave them to ripen at home.
To prevent green tomatoes from rotting, cracking, and turning red, it is necessary to create favorable conditions for their storage. It should be a moderately warm and dry dark place. The optimal air temperature is 20 degrees, humidity is 85%. Tomatoes are best preserved in a wooden box or cardboard box. All tomatoes intended for storage must be carefully inspected; if rotten and cracked fruits are detected, they must be disposed of. Only healthy and undamaged tomatoes will be preserved. Those tomatoes that begin to turn red earlier must be immediately removed from the box. If normal conditions are created for tomatoes, they can be stored until winter.

Important! While tomatoes are growing in the garden, they need sunlight. But as soon as you pick the fruits from the bush, they can turn red even without the sun.

This well-known method of storing green tomatoes in boxes in a dark place is far from the only one. Over the years of their gardening activities, experienced summer residents have accumulated a lot of tricks that they use to preserve the harvest. So, green tomatoes will ripen quickly if:

  • Place an apple or banana among the tomatoes. These fruits, like the red tomato, emit ethylene, which causes the vegetables to turn red quickly.
  • Each tomato can be wrapped in newspaper and placed in a box in several rows, preferably no more than five. One box should contain no more than 12 kilograms of vegetables.
  • Sprinkle the tomatoes with sawdust or foam.
  • Wrap the vegetables in a napkin moistened with alcohol. In this case, tomatoes can be stored until spring.
  • Place vegetables in felt boots. This method was used by peasants a couple of centuries ago.
  • Wrap the vegetables in red cloth or paper. There is no scientific explanation for this method, but according to many years of experience of many summer residents, it is effective.
  • Use a special gas that promotes the ripening of vegetables. This method is widely used in large-scale farming.

Important! When storing vegetables, you need to provide good air circulation; tomatoes should breathe freely. They should not be stored in sealed, polyethylene or plastic containers.

Well, for those who don’t want to bother with storage and compliance with all conditions for a long time, there are recipes for canning green tomatoes.

When and how to collect

Green tomatoes are found not only in open ground, but also in greenhouses. Harvesting depends on the ripening period of the variety. If a tomato variety is characterized by a late harvest of fruits, then they should be collected no earlier than August. The main point is that unripe tomatoes must be collected before frost begins. At low night temperatures (below zero), the taste begins to deteriorate, and the fruit itself begins to rot.

When harvested, tomatoes should reach their size, which is characteristic of the variety; a slight blush may appear on the skin. The fruits are torn off with the stalk and placed in rows in a basket or wooden box. Since the flesh of green tomatoes is quite hard, you don’t have to worry about damaging the skin.

Fruit collection is carried out in dry cloudy weather in the evening or in the morning.

If a tomato bush is infected with late blight, rot or other fungal diseases or viruses, then it is not advisable to collect the tomatoes growing on it. There is a high probability that a diseased tomato will infect a healthy one, and as a result, the entire crop will be ruined. However, if there is a small affected area on the fruit, then before storage it must be scalded with boiling water or placed in hot water at 60-70 degrees. Infections die at high temperatures, and the tomato will be safe and can be eaten.

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Types of tomato varieties that can be stored for a long time

How to Preserve Green Tomatoes Before They Turn RedHow to preserve green tomatoes until they turn red
Unfortunately, not all varieties can be stored for a long time at home. These tomatoes begin to rot quickly, so they must be eaten immediately or canned. But if you need to preserve tomatoes for a long time (for example, you want these vegetables to be on the New Year's table), then it is better to grow storage-resistant varieties. Today, thanks to the work of breeders, there are many such varieties.

The varieties “Orange Ball”, “Vasilisa”, “Giraffe”, “Long Keeper” have the ability to be stored until spring. The varieties “Zhanna”, “Podzimny”, “Rio Grande”, “Japanese crab”, “Lunny”, “Novorossiya” are stored for a shorter amount of time. Representatives of these varieties can be a wonderful treat for the New Year.

Important! Different varieties of tomatoes need to be stored in different boxes due to different ripening periods.

Ripening tomatoes with signs of late blight

Green tomatoes, collected from diseased bushes, are placed in a plastic box with holes, for example, for fruit, and poured with hot water at a temperature of about 60 degrees for several minutes, dried and left to ripen. They need to be checked daily, removing sick ones.

With slight damage, tomatoes can be used to make salads. There are many recipes for making them.

Interesting: How to Dry Bell Peppers at Home for the Winter

In order for harvested tomatoes to be well stored and fully ripened, you need to pick them from the bush correctly and on time.

Storing fresh tomatoes in winter

After the green tomatoes have turned red, they must be used. Most often, housewives canned tomatoes, salted them, made tomato juice, ketchup, and various salads. But it is known that canned vegetables lose all their nutrients. It's tasty, satisfying, but not always healthy. But in winter you really want fresh vegetables, which are very expensive during this period. Therefore, housewives are looking for and trying different ways to preserve red tomatoes for at least a couple of months.

  • You can preserve vegetables if, after washing and wiping them dry, put them in sterilized jars and sprinkle with dry mustard.
  • Also, tomatoes will be preserved for a long time if you put them in a three-liter jar, add three tablespoons of alcohol and set the liquid on fire, then immediately roll up the jar. A vacuum space is formed inside it, which prevents bacteria from developing.
  • You can store green tomatoes in a dark cellar, placing them on shelves. When you need them, take out the vegetables; in the light they will turn red in a couple of days.
  • It is also fashionable to freeze tomatoes. Frozen vegetables can be added to meals and salads.

As you can see, little peasant tricks and simple actions will help preserve the harvest even in frosty conditions, and provide all family members with vitamins and nutrients in the form of tasty and juicy tomatoes for the winter.

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Storage options for unripe tomatoes

There are several objective reasons; if they exist, experienced summer residents remove unripe tomatoes from the bushes without further hesitation.
The reason is both the unpleasant symptoms of a fungal disease (powdery mildew, late blight) and a large harvest. When signs of disease appear, formed fruits are collected from the bush, and the plant is treated with a fungicide solution. If the bush overcomes the infection, the remaining ovaries will develop safely and the green tomatoes will ripen.

A healthy bush overloaded with fruits may have branches that break. By removing part of the crop, the summer resident reduces the load on the vines. It's not just ripe tomatoes that need to be picked. Brown, green fruits that have reached medium to large size are also collected.

Prolonged bad weather (rain) can lead to tomatoes cracking and rotting. Preserve the harvest by timely harvesting and proper storage. Don't delay picking tomatoes in August when the nights get cold.

Green tomatoes can be stored in various ways.

In boxes:

  • Fillers: paper and dry tops. To ensure free air circulation, you will need no more than three layers, each layered with paper or sawdust. If dry tops are preserved, chop them and sprinkle them on top: having antimicrobial properties, they suppress the development of putrefactive processes. In this form, the box is left in a cool, dark place.
  • Fillers: paper, chalk, dry high-moor peat. The bottom is lined with thick paper and filled with 1.5 cm of peat. Place the tomatoes and cover them so that the fruits do not touch each other. When the box is full, sprinkle chalk on top (it collects excess moisture).

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The fruits are stored in a cardboard box, each wrapped in wrapping paper. If you place the box in a warm room, heat will flow through the cardboard and they will ripen faster.

In alcohol

You need to prepare a dry three-liter jar. Wash and dry the fruits, carefully place them in a jar. Add 3 tablespoons of alcohol, close the lid, roll so that the alcohol is distributed evenly.

Light the alcohol with a long wick; when it lights up, close the prepared lid and roll up. The tomatoes will not burn, and the alcohol will burn out instantly.

On the stems

The bush with green tomatoes is carefully dug up; there is no need to shake off the soil. Prepare a solution of clay and water in equal proportions and mix well to obtain a homogeneous consistency.

The roots of the plant are placed in this composition. In order for the roots to dry not immediately, but gradually, you will need to sprinkle the clay with water, first generously, then less and less.

After two to three weeks, when the roots have dried, tie them tightly with twine and hang the bush upside down in a cool room. In two weeks, the tomatoes will reach maturity and be ready to eat.

In felt boots

In the old days, tomatoes were placed in felt boots for ripening and placed in a warm place - on a Russian stove. Now the felt boots can be covered with a warm old coat or wrapped in a woolen scarf. This will speed up their ripening.

There are several ways to preserve tomatoes. One of the simplest, filled with vegetables.

You will need carrots, peppers, garlic:

  1. Grate the carrots on a fine grater. Chop the pepper with a knife. Peel the garlic and squeeze through a press. Add salt to taste and mix. Cut the tomatoes, but not all the way, so that the halves do not fall apart; do not remove the inside. Place a little filling in each half.
  2. Place the stuffed tomatoes in a jar, sprinkle with salt, and cover with cold water.
  3. Cover with a lid and leave to ferment in a cool place for 3 days. Roll up with a machine.

Tomatoes can be grown not only in the garden, but also in an apartment on the windowsill. You should choose a low-growing or dwarf variety.

The germinated seeds are planted in flower pots and placed in the sunny side. The plant bears fruit for 2-3 years.

The unpleasant taste of green tomatoes is caused by the solanine content in them. This is a toxic substance that belongs to the group of alkaloids, and in large doses poses a danger to the human body. In order to minimize the effect of solanine, tomatoes are pickled, fermented or salted. If you need to keep the fruits fresh, you should properly store them.

Below are some examples of how you can store unripe tomatoes.

Where to store

There are several options for storing green tomato harvests. They can be used in apartments, cottages, and country houses.


The material of the container is not important.
Cardboard, plastic, and wooden boxes are suitable. The bottom must be covered with several layers of newspapers. Place the tomatoes in layers, each covered with a layer of paper. You can use dry straw if the crop will be stored in a utility room. Deep drawers are not needed. One should hold no more than 12 kg. Part of the tomato will choke if you put more than 3 layers in a container. The storage location must be easily accessible. Every 3-4 days it is necessary to check the condition of the fruits and select:

  • ripe;
  • brown;
  • rotten.

Tomatoes starting to turn brown should be placed in a separate box. This will slow down the ripening process of green tomatoes and extend the period of their consumption.


In an apartment, it is convenient to store green tomatoes in paper bags. The fruits can be wiped with a rag soaked in vodka. The absence of infection will extend the storage period. At a temperature of 18-20 °C, the fruits will turn red after 2 weeks; if the room temperature is not higher than 15 °C, the ripening time will increase to 4 weeks.

In the cellar, tomatoes can be stored in plastic bags. There is no need to tie them. The air should circulate freely. It is better to hang the bags. The temperature in the cellar is low, so the tomatoes will ripen slowly. If necessary, the package can be brought into the room. In a warm room they will quickly turn red.


If you have glass jars, green tomatoes can be ripened in them.
Convenient to store in a 3 liter container with a wide neck. The filled container should be closed with a lid and placed in a closet or other dark place. To speed up ripening, put a banana or a couple of red tomatoes in the jar. The condition of the fruits must be monitored and removed if signs of spoilage appear. At room temperature, tomatoes in jars ripen in 10 days.

Ripe tomatoes can also be stored in a jar. It must be sterilized in a microwave, oven or steam. Wash the selected fruits, wipe dry and place in a prepared container. Prepare the lid, pour 3 tbsp into the jar. l alcohol, set it on fire, close the lid. There will be no oxygen in the jar due to combustion; ripe tomatoes are stored longer in a vacuum.


Both ripe and green tomatoes are stored in the vegetable compartment of the refrigerator. For long-term storage they are placed in bags. The fruits are pre-wiped dry. There should be no condensation in the plastic bag.

Ripe tomatoes can be frozen. Cherries and small cream are frozen whole, and large-fruited varieties are cut into slices (circles, quarters, cubes). You can use frozen tomatoes when preparing pizza, meat and vegetable stews, pilaf, and borscht.

On the bushes

Healthy bushes with green tomatoes can be dug up with a lump of earth. If there is a heated greenhouse, then bring them there and bury them. If you don't have one, you can use the barn. Place the bushes in buckets and cover the roots with soil.

The soil will have to be moistened periodically. Only healthy plants without signs of late blight, powdery mildew and other fungal diseases are suitable for this storage method. On bushes, small fruits will increase in size.

Everyone's favorite cherry tomatoes are stored differently. The brushes are cut, tied into bunches, and hung in a barn or other utility room. The fruits gradually ripen and are stored for a long time.


Green tomatoes make excellent winter preparations. To prepare pickled green tomatoes you will need:

  • tomatoes 1.5 kg;
  • coarse pickling salt 400 g;
  • wine vinegar 800 ml;
  • olive oil 500 ml;
  • oregano to taste;
  • some hot red pepper (dried).

Small varieties are suitable. The fruits need to be washed, cut into halves, poured into a basin or pan, sprinkled with salt, and left for 5 hours. Liquid will release; to get rid of it, drain the tomatoes in a colander and return them to the pan.

Pour in vinegar, after 12 hours put it back in a colander. We sterilize jars. Place the dried tomatoes in prepared containers. Sprinkle each layer with spices (oregano, pepper pieces). Pour olive oil into jars and roll up. The preparation can be eaten after a month.

What you need to keep fresh tomatoes for a long time

Correct collection

Do you have a wine cellar? What a score! It would be more correct to say that the tomatoes are lucky, because they will feel at home there. What about wine, you ask? What about wine? The wine will have to make room a little. But in winter you will always have not only something to drink, but also something to snack on!

But seriously, a wine cellar temperature of 10-14°C is exactly what most tomatoes need for long-term storage. The closer the temperature is to the ideal (see table above), the longer you will be able to see fresh tomatoes on your table.

If you want to extend the shelf life of ripe tomatoes, use the following method:

  1. Wipe the selected fruits with alcohol or a solution of potassium permanganate and let them dry completely.
  2. Take a plastic or wooden box with holes. Slots are necessary for good ventilation. Cover the bottom of the container with any material that absorbs moisture. This can be parchment, burlap, straw or plain paper. The ideal option is peat or dried sphagnum moss.
  3. Arrange the tomatoes in one layer. Sprinkle them with sawdust, straw or cover with another layer of paper. Place a maximum of one more layer of fruit.
  4. Cover the whole thing again with sawdust and store it in a cool room with good ventilation.

White and green tomatoes can be stored until mid-winter under the right conditions.

  1. Disinfect all fruits with alcohol and let them dry.
  2. Wrap each tomato in dark paper to protect it from light. Place all the fruits in one layer so that they do not touch each other.
  3. Cover the top of the box with straw and leave it for storage in a ventilated area with a temperature of 8-10°C.

By the New Year, you will have your own ripened tomatoes on your table. If you want to enjoy them earlier, just move the box to a warm place and place it closer to the light. And also put 1-2 ripe fruits there.

It is more difficult to preserve the tomato harvest in an apartment for a long time, but it is also possible. What places are suitable for storage:

  1. Loggia. On a glazed loggia or balcony, the temperature, depending on the weather, can fluctuate from 10°C and above. Tomatoes should like these conditions. Just remember to protect them from the sun, which speeds up the ripening of the fruit.
  2. Floor under the bed. Not 10°C, like on the loggia, but still cooler than in the kitchen cabinets.
  3. Under the bathroom. However, with this storage method, monitor the humidity level and ventilate the bathroom more often.

Those with a cool, dark pantry are especially lucky. Tomatoes will feel quite comfortable on the lower shelves or on the floor. Not a wine cellar, of course, but better than in other places.

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