University of Missouri Extension

MP562, Reviewed December 2010

Home Storage of Fruits and Vegetables in Root Cellars

Barbara Willenberg
Extension assistant
Karla Hughes
State food and nutrition specialist

Use this chart as a quick reference. For more detailed information about constructing and using a root cellar, check the references listed or call your local county extension center.

Root Cellar storage requirements

Apples

Beans, dry

Beets

Brussels sprouts

Cabbage

Cabbage, Chinese

Carrots

Cauliflower

Celeriac

Celery

Endive (Escarole)

Garlic

Grapefruit

Grapes

Horseradish

Jerusalem artichoke

Kale

Kohlrabi

Leeks

Onions

Oranges

Parsnips

Pears

Peas

Peppers, hot dried

Popcorn

Potatoes

Potatoes, sweet

Pumpkins

Radish, winter

Rutabaga

Salsify, oyster plant

Squash, winter

Tomatoes

Turnip

Note
Storing foods in a root cellar makes it possible to eat fresh fruits and vegetables from the home garden well into the winter months.

The length of time that fruits and vegetables keep well in root cellars depends on several factors:

Vegetables and fruits should not be stored together even though temperatures and moisture requirements are similar. As fruits such as apples and pears ripen, they give off ethylene gas which decreases the storage life of vegetables. This is especially evident with potatoes which sprout early if stored near certain fruits. Also, the odor of strong smelling vegetables, like turnips and cabbage, can be absorbed by fruits and other vegetables. Store them away from other food and where the odor cannot waft into the house.

Do not allow fruits and vegetables to freeze.

References

MP562, reviewed December 2010

MP562 Home Storage of Fruits and Vegetables in Root Cellars | University of Missouri Extension

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