Michigan crop harvest calendar - When fruit and vegetables are normally ready to pick in MI

This month's notes: February 2016: Strawberries and blueberries each have a very brief season; don't miss them: See your state's crop availability calendar for more specific dates of upcoming crops. And see our guide to local fruit and vegetable festivals, such as strawberry festivals and blueberry festivals. Organic farms are identified in green!  Also make your own ice cream - see How to make ice cream and ice cream making equipment and manuals. Have fun, eat healthier and better tasting, and save money by picking your own locally grown fruit and vegetables, and then using our easy canning and freezing directions

Organic farms are identified in green!  See our guide to local fruit and vegetable festivals!. Please tell the farms you found them here - and ask them to update their information!!

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Crop Harvest Calendar for Michigan

This page has a table below that tells when each fruit or vegetable is normally ready to be harvested in Michigan!  We also have a page with links to our own simple instructions on canning, freezing and drying  many fruits and vegetables, such as  how to make jam, apple butter, applesauce, spaghetti sauce, salsa, pickles, ketchup or freezing corn.

Typical Crop Availability - When to Pick in Michigan

Fruit/Veg Jan Feb March April May June July August Sept Oct Nov December
apples                         X X X X X X    
Asian pears                         X X X X X X    
asparagus         X X X X X                      
beans                 X X X X X X X X X X    
beets                       X X X X X        
blackberries                 X X X X                
blueberries                       X X X            
broccoli       X X X                 X X X X    
cabbage       X X X             X X X X X X    
cantaloupes                     X X X X X X        
cherries                   X X X                
chestnuts                               X X X    
Christmas trees                                     X X
cucumbers                     X X X X            
eggplant                     X X X X X X        
greens         X X X X X X X X X X X X X X    
Fruit/Veg Jan Feb March April May June July August Sept Oct Nov December
herbs         X X X X X X X X X X X X X X    
nectarines                     X X X X            
peaches                 X X X X X X X X        
peas               X X                      
peppers                     X X X X X X        
plums                             X X X X    
potatoes             X X X X X X                
pumpkins                             X X X X    
raspberries                     X X X X X X        
rhubarb             X X X X                    
squash                 X X X X X X X X X X    
strawberries       X     X        
sweet corn                         X X X X        
sweet potatoes             x x x x
tomatoes                         X X X X        
watermelons                         X X X X X X    

The light green indicates light crops at the beginning, end, or in between seasons - dark green is when the bulk of the crop ripens and picking is best.

Typical apple ripening dates in Michigan

Apple Varieties Approx Ripening Dates Description & Uses
(summer) Mac
mid Aug -
early Sept
Smaller and slightly sweeter than winter mac - eating, sauce, jelly.
Paula Red early Sept Crunchy and juicy - good for pies, baking, sauce, drying, jelly.
Whitney Crab early Sept Large - for spicing and jelly.
State Fair early Sept Sweet/tart, not a real hard apple - eating sauce, jelly, baking, salads.
Early Gold early-mid Sept Tart and crisp, a cross between transparent & a golden - eating, baking, pies, sauce.
Wealthy early-mid Sept Tart and tangy, an antique apple that's excellent for pies, sauce and baking, tart for eating.
Jona-Mac mid-later Sept Jonathan and Macintosh cross - eating, baking, sauce, jelly, pies.
Macintosh mid-late Sept The perennial favorite! - eating, baking, pies(cooks down), sauce, jelly.
Cortland mid-late Sept White flesh, crispy, a best seller! Excellent for eating, drying, pies, sauce, baking, jelly, salads.
Honeycrisp late September -
early Oct
Large, firm, juicy dessert apple - our fastest selling eating apple (not recommended for baking).
Sweet 16 late September -
early Oct
Crunchy, juicy, sweet - similar to Honeycrisp (but not quite as hard or large) - eating, salads, can bake.
Snow Apples early Oct Tiny, sweet, aromatic eating apple (an antique apple) - not a keeper!
Spartan early Oct Crunchy, tart, juicy - eating, salads, pies, baking, keeper too!
Gala early Oct Our sweetest apple! crunchy, non-acid eating apple, not large - good for lunch boxes, salads.
Wolf River early-mid Oct Giant, sour old-time pie apple.
Empire early-mid Oct Cross between a Mac and Red Delicious, juicy taste-test favorite! - eating, salads, sauce, drying, can bake.
Cameo early-mid Oct Crisp, sweet/tart eating apple! Great for applesauce
Red Delicious mid Oct A favorite old eating apple - salads and a good keeper.
Jonathan mid Oct Tart and aromatic - eating, pies (does not "mush"), baking, jelly, applesauce!
Golden Delicious mid Oct Sweet old favorite, stores well with moisture added - eating, salads, baking, pies, sauce.
Red Haralson mid Oct Tart and juicy. Excellent flavor for pies (cooks down), drying, baking, eating.
Jona-gold mid Oct Part Jonathan, part Golden Delicious - good eater, pies, baking, sauce, jelly, salads.
Ida Red mid-late Oct All-purpose apple! super keeper - pies, baking, eating (tart), drying, frying!
Northern Spy mid-late Oct Big and firm - pies, baking, drying, eating.
Double Red Stamen Winesap late Oct "Wine-like" flavor, creamy interior, not a large apple in the north - pies, baking, eating.
Yellow Newton Pippen late Oct Antique (Geo. Washington's favorite!) tart, crisp nutty flavor, good keeper and eater. Firm in pies and baking.


This page was updated on

Picking Tips

[General picking tips and a guide to each fruit and vegetable] [How much do I need to pick? (Yields - how much raw makes how much cooked or frozen)] [Selecting the right varieties to pick] [All about apple varieties - which to pick and why!]  [Picking tips for Vegetables] [ Strawberry picking tips] [ Blueberries picking tips]









Illustrated Canning, Freezing, Jam Instructions and Recipes

All About Home Canning, Freezing and Making Jams, Pickles, Sauces, etc. ] [FAQs - Answers to common questions and problems] [Recommended books about home canning, jam making, drying and preserving!] [Free canning publications to download and print]

Home Canning Kits


Ball Enamel Waterbath Canner, Including Chrome-Plated Rack and 4-Piece Utensil Set

* All the tools you need for hot waterbath canning - in one comprehensive set!
* Complete with 21 1/2 qt. enameled waterbath canner
* Also includes canning rack, funnel, jar lifter, jar wrencher, bubble freer, tongs and lid lifter.
* A Kitchen Krafts exclusive collection.

This is the same type of standard canner that my grandmother used to make everything from applesauce to jams and jellies to tomato and spaghetti sauce. This complete kit includes everything you need and lasts for years: the canner, jar rack, jar grabber tongs, lid lifting wand, a plastic funnel, labels, bubble freer. It's much cheaper than buying the items separately. You'll never need anything else except jars & lids (and the jars are reusable)! There is also a simple kit with just the canner and rack, and a pressure canner, if you want to do vegetables (other than tomatoes). To see more canners, of different styles, makes and prices, click here!
Don't forget the Ball Blue Book!

Lids, Rings, Jars, mixes, pectin, etc.

Need lids, rings and replacement jars?  Or pectin to make jam, spaghetti sauce or salsa mix or pickle mixes?  Get them all here, and usually at lower prices than your local store!

Get them all here at the best prices on the internet!