From the excitement of the start of the season to the growing operations and now the harvest, a grower needs to be prepared. Proper planning and preparation just like with the start of a season is essential to a successful and hassle free harvest. In order to make an effective plan, an operator should understand the overall nature and structure of harvested products as each method of harvesting is strongly influenced on the plant’s basic structure. Additional considerations need to be considered in the method of harvest such as metabolic processes, development of plants and plant organs, and overall stress in harvested products.
Harvesting and Plant Structures
When considering a plant structure, one extremely important concept is whether or not the organ or tissue- at the cellular or sub-cellular level- is not fixed, but in a state of transition. These changes in structure are key during the post-harvest period. Any changes in structure are especially important during this period because once it is formed it will eventually be destined to degrade and recycle back into carbon dioxide.
Marked changes in the structure occur with the eventual use of the product or due to loss from a pathogen invasion. At the cellular and sub-cellular level, key changes occur and intensify as the product approaches senescence or death which can be seen in seeds and intact plants, or during the beginning of a renewed growth cycle. These products can be grouped based on their overall morphology and whether or not they’re intact plants or detached plant parts. Detached plant parts can be further divided into subcategories.
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