How to Improve the Taste of Garden Vegetables


According to Washington State University, home grown vegetables just taste better than their store-bought counterparts. That's because many store-bought vegetables are harvested before they are ripe and then treated with a spray to force them to ripen. Because these vegetables are not harvested at the right time, their true flavor has very little chance to develop. But even if you are growing your own garden, there are some things that you can do to improve the taste of your garden vegetables.

Step 1

Test the pH of you soil by digging a sample from your garden. Take a teaspoon full from the top of your soil. Then dig down 3 inches and take a second teaspoon full. Mix your samples together and spread them over a sheet of newspaper to dry. Place the dry soil sample into a brown paper bag. Then take it to your local county extension service for testing. You can raise your soil's pH by mixing lime into your soil. You can lower it by mixing sulfur.

Step 2

Work compost, and lime or sulfur into your soil by breaking up the soil with a rototiller to a depth of 8 inches. Then spread finished compost over the soil to a depth of 3 inches. Turn the compost into the soil by running the rototiller over the soil. According to Rutgers University, improving the quality of your soil will improve the flavor of your vegetables.

Step 3

Check your garden daily. If you grow a wide variety of vegetables in your home garden, they will all become ripe at different times. Checking your garden daily and harvesting each vegetable at the optimal time will ensure the best flavor and the highest vitamin content for each vegetable.

Step 4

Store your tomatoes in a cool, moist, dark place. Avoid storing tomatoes in a refrigerator. This will cause them to lose texture and flavor.

Step 5

Mix your vegetable plants with companion plants that will improve the flavor of these vegetables. For example, growing Anise plants near vegetables will increase their vigor and flavor. Basil, when planted near tomatoes, will increase their flavor, and drive away pest insects.

Things You'll Need

  • Newspaper
  • Lime
  • Sulfur
  • Rototiller
  • Finished compost


  • Rutgers New Jersey Agricultural Experimentation Station: Can Soil Fertility Improve Tomato Flavor?
  • Washinton State University Master Gardener Program: When to Harvest Home Grown Vegetables
  • University of Floriday IFAS Extension: Herbs in the Florida Garden

Who Can Help

  • Golden Harvest Organics: Companion Planting
Keywords: improving vegetable flavor, insuring produce quality, growing home vegetables

About this Author

Tracy S. Morris has been a freelance writer since 2000. She has published two novels and numerous online articles. Her work has appeared in national magazines and newspapers, including "Ferrets," "CatFancy," "Lexington Herald Leader" and "The Tulsa World."