New Jersey vegetable shipments got underway in mid-April with spinach, collards, beets, radishes, escarole, endive, Swiss chard, lettuces and herbs such as parsley, dill, coriander and cilantro.
Asparagus loadings from Southern New Jersey began in mid-April in excellent quality. The state ranks fourth in U.S. production of asparagus. In 2016 some 5.6 million pounds of asparagus was harvested off 1,500 acres in New Jersey.
Lettuces became available in late April. Cabbage, pickles and turnip shipments have just started. Cucumbers and squash will get underway in early June. Loadings for sweet corn and tomatoes will be available by the Fourth of July and, with an early start to the season this year, both should be in decent volume by then.
Minor quantities of early blueberry varieties like Weymouth should be starting in early June. The much more widely planted Duke variety should start three to four days later, with volume available a week after that. In 2015, New Jersey produced about 9,100 acres of berries yielding about 48.6 million pounds.
Yellow peach volume should start with the early cling varieties in mid-July, with volume by late July. The widely planted John Boy clingless varieties should start by the end of July. Good yellow volume is expected by early August through early September. White peach volume begins with the White Lady variety in mid-August through early September. About 150 peach producers grew about 42.2 million pounds of quality peaches on 4,700 total peach acres, according to the last U.S. Department of Agriculture census.
More than two dozen vegetables are being shipped, many to regional markets, but some are destined up and down the East Coast and even to the Midwest.
New Jersey has a great diversity of fruits and vegetables due to its moderate climate and growing conditions. The Garden State’s 11 principal fresh-market vegetables are tomatoes, sweet corn, peppers, cabbage, cucumbers, lettuce, spinach, eggplant, escarole, snap beans and asparagus. The five principal fresh market fruits are strawberries, blueberries, peaches, apples and cranberries.