When to Harvest Lychee

The skins of lychees are peeled before eating. image by Neil Gould/sxc.hu


Lychee trees originated in China and are now grown throughout the world in all-year warm temperatures. The lychee fruit grows in clusters and are harvested together. They can be kept fresh after harvesting for up to 5 weeks in the refrigerator. Peel the skin of the fruit prior to eating.

Step 1

Begin to observe the fruits on your lychee tree in the spring, generally around May.

Step 2

Wait for the fruits to fully mature on the tree before harvesting. They will get a deep pink or strawberry-red color. The skin has protuberances on it that are bumpy and close together. They start to thin out and get less crowded after ripening, so harvest before this happens.

Step 3

Use snippers to cut about 2 inches below the cluster of fruit. For hard to reach areas, use a pruning pole to snip off the clusters of fruit.

Step 4

Keep harvesting for about 6 weeks, sometimes into July, depending on when your first lychees were ripe.

Things You'll Need

  • Snippers
  • Pruning pole


  • California Rare Fruit Growers, Inc.
  • Perdue University
  • BlueProduce.com
Keywords: lychee fruit, pick lychees, pick clusters lychees

About this Author

Melissa Lewis is a former elementary classroom teacher and media specialist. She has also written for various online publications. Lewis holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University of Maryland Baltimore County.

Photo by: Neil Gould/sxc.hu