Peanuts - When to harvest?

eternalifeAugust 17, 2008

I live in Dallas and have a raised garden in my back yard. I decided to plant a couple of Jumbo Virgina Peanut plants, just to see if I could grow them. They sprouted quickly, grew a ton of leaves and then it took weeks and weeks for the plants to get yellow flowers on them. Then, the plants grew bigger and bigger and are literally taking over a huge part of the garden now.

The other day, I decided to dig down a little and see if there were any peanuts in the ground. I found one and it was almost full size. It was a white color. I don't know a thing about peanuts, so would someone with experience tell me what I am looking for, when to harvest and then what to do with them? I heard they have to be dried, but don't know the complete process.

PLEASE HELP!

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chaman(z7MD)

Jumbo Virginia peanuts take 120 days to mature.Leaves color will start changing to yellow as the maturity date comes close by.Dallas weather should be long enough for the peanuts to ripen to maturity.As the leaves turn to yellow you may pull out the plants and let them dry in the shadow.Your garage or some place in the basement or a storage area in your back yard will be a good place.Once the plant is dried you can remove the peanuts easily.The white color you saw suggests that pesnuts or not ripened to be pulled out.
I am posting the pic. of peanuts (not Virginia Jumbo) left to dry for observation.

I have to pull out the peanut plants much earler due to danger of frost in Maryland before they fully ripen.You will see some leaves are dieing due to cold weather.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2008 at 7:53PM
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farmerdilla

Good looking crop, Shaman. Do you use the immature ones as boiled peanuts? Very popular down here.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2008 at 8:25PM
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eternalife

So Chaman, do the peanut shells actually turn that brown color underground? Mine are getting close to the right size, but like I said, are not brown on the outside yet.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2008 at 8:40PM
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shot(8 - GA)

Yeah chaman, pretty peanuts like farmerdilla said. Depending on what you plan to do with the peanuts whether you let them dry on the vine. Difference between raw peanuts and green peanuts.
Farmerdilla, remember those times when we would pull up a bunch and then sit around picking them off... into a wash pot to boil... lots of salt... lots of fun.
Farmers that grow peanuts for sale (not green) plow them up which inverts them, then let them lie in the field for a couple of days (depending on the weather), then use a peanut combine to pick them and then off to the buying point where they are cleaned and the moisture checked. Then they are graded by government inspectors for moisture and foreign material, disease, etc. In order for them to pass inspection, the moisture content MUST not be above 10.49%.
Lol, prolly too much information.

Shot

    Bookmark   August 18, 2008 at 7:37AM
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chaman(z7MD)

eternlife,
Most of the peanuts surrounding to the Tap root will turn to brown color as the maturity date comes closer.

farmerdilla,
Thanks for more infos. about peanuts.
Yes, we boil the immature peanuts with salt and oregano seeds.Freeze them and use them year round.

Chaman

    Bookmark   August 18, 2008 at 9:38AM
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rjinga

eternalife, I'd love to plant peanuts, because I know they will grow around here (I pay $20 a 1/2 bushel for green ones from a local growers peanut stand).

How do you start peanuts and what do you use for seed? Is the obvious too obvious? do you use other peanuts? Also when do you plant them, I'm in GA. I guess I can do my own research, but I was just curious what you found out etc.

We boil ours too in salted water, YUMMY, I'm a GA transplant and just about could not believe anyone would actually eat "boiled" peanuts, but they are sure a treat around here.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2008 at 5:47PM
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aulani

Yum, boiled peanuts. Did you know that the Chinese boil peanuts too? Yup. They add a tiny bit of star anise to the boiling water along with salt. I grew up in Hawaii where the Chinese sell boiled peanuts at their mom & pop stands. When I was a kid, 25 cents for a paper sack about the size of a brown paper lunch sack. So good!

    Bookmark   August 18, 2008 at 5:59PM
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rjinga

Here $8 for a large quart sized zip lock bag!!! ready to eat

    Bookmark   August 18, 2008 at 7:56PM
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farmerdilla

Peanuts are fairly easy to grow. The main type in Georgia is the runner type - Cultivar: Georgia Green. If you buy raw peanuts, this is what you get here. The Virginia type is bigger but mostly grown further north. They do mature a little quicker. Spanish types will grow just about anywhere a peanut will grow. They are small but delicious.
http://www.aggeorgia.com/peanuts.asp
http://hgic.clemson.edu/factsheets/hgic1315.htm

Here is a link that might be useful: Growing peanuts

    Bookmark   August 18, 2008 at 8:20PM
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grandad_2003(9A/sunset 28)

EternalLife, I planted the left 2 rows at the end of May and the right row around the middle of June. I expect to start harvesting around the beginning of September. I like to boil these up using salt, crab boil, red pepper, and lemon juice... which is essentially the same recipe as with shrimp, crabs, or crawfish.

    Bookmark   August 19, 2008 at 10:20AM
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chaman(z7MD)

grandad, I appreciate your garden pics.It seems you are harvesting really good crop of vegetables every year.
I have been growing peanuts for more than a decade.Due to short warm weather I have to pull out the plants before full maturity.Boiling with salt and oregano seeds and freezing them is a good way for us to preserve the nuts to use year round as I have posted earlier.I am posting the pic. of peanuts from this year's garden.They are not so good as yours but still good enough for enough production for us.

    Bookmark   August 19, 2008 at 11:35AM
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lorna-organic

I've never had boiled peanuts. What do they taste like? Do they become soft?

Lorna

    Bookmark   August 21, 2008 at 4:51AM
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aaaaaaaa(6)

Grandad and chaman--great pictures!! It just inspires gardners like me. Thanks.

    Bookmark   August 21, 2008 at 10:22AM
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