How to Harvest Lettuce, Herbs, Tomatoes & More

Did you know there are 2 ways to harvest lettuce? Or that a single basil, chive or parsley plant can (and should) produce multiple yields? Whether this will be your 1st Tower Garden harvest or your 5th (or more), a little help never hurts.

Gathering Gorgeous Greens

Most greens—such as lettuce, kale, collards and others—allow for 2 harvesting methods, so you may always have fresh ingredients on hand for salads and other healthy dishes.

  1. Whole head. Remove the entire plant and net pot from your Tower Garden, or cut all the leaves off at the base of the plant.
  2. Individual leaf. This technique keeps the plant alive and encourages continued production. When there are plenty of mature leaves present:
    • Harvest only a few leaves at a time, from the bottom of the plant upward.
    • Allow 2-3 leaves to remain so the plant may keep growing.
    • Repeat every 2-3 days until the plant bolts, or begins flowering.
    • After bolting, replace the plant with a fresh seedling.

Watch: How to Harvest Lettuce

Picking Perfect Produce

While tomatoes, squash, peppers and other fruit-bearing plants may be quite different, a few harvesting best practices apply to all. Do the following to improve your chances of record yields:

  • Harvest frequently to promote continued flowering and production.
  • When harvesting, use a clean knife or shears to avoid injuring the plant.

Watch: How to Prune and Harvest Tomatoes

Harvesting Healthy Herbs

It seems a little counter intuitive, but typically the more herbs you harvest, the more you will grow. And there’s no such thing as too many herbs! Here are a few guidelines to remember when harvesting herbs:

  • Harvest frequently to encourage healthy, bushy growth.
  • Harvest no more than 1/3 of the plant at a time.
  • Once the plant bolts, replace it with a fresh seedling.

Watch: How to Harvest Basil, Chives and Parsley

Saving Seeds

Harvesting seeds from your plants may not be something you’ve considered. But it’s a great way to keep growing your favorite crops for free! The following seed-saving steps will apply to most plants.

  • After flowering or fruiting, collect seeds from open-pollinated plant varieties.
  • Wash and dry seeds.
  • Store seeds in an airtight container, and place somewhere cool, dry and dark.

Get additional seed saving advice »

Want More Harvesting Help?

For more harvesting tips, check out the official Tower Garden growing guides for 11 different plants. Each also features specific growing instructions and useful reminders.

Download PDF Growing Guides for:


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