Cucumbers must be fresh—no more than a day from when cut from the vine—in order to make the best pickles. The old rule is, “24 hours from vine to brine.”
“Twenty-four hours from vine to brine is standard pickle practice” was cited in print in 1944.
24 August 1944, Alton (IL) Evening Telegraph, “Ways to Pickle Garden Produce,” pg. 10, col. 1:
Just a few “musts” must be considered to make a perfect pack. First is to use cucumbers soon after they have been snipped from the vine. Twenty-four hours from vine to brine is standard pickle practice.
Google News Archive
1 September 1955, Milwaukee (WI) Sentinel, “Can Pickles Within Day Of Picking,” pt. 1, pg. 16, col. 2:
TWENTY-FOUR hours from vine to brine is the rule to follow for best pickling results.
15 July 1964, Burlington (NC) Daily Times-News, “Prepare For Good Eating By Pickling” by Mrs. Nancy J. Adams, pg. 6-C, col. 1:
Hollow pickles are due to using cucumbers that are not fresh. A good rule to follow is “24 hours from vine to brine.”
15 July 1987, The Times (Trenton, NJ), “How to choose the freshest produce in market” by Midwest Living magazine, pg. B1, col. 5:
Timing also is critical with pickling cucumbers. When buying cucumbers, follow the old rule: “24 hours from vine to brine.”
The Frank Family History
By Leo H. Frank
Maple Grove, MN: L.H. Frank
The homemaker obeyed both the letter and the spirit of the old saying, “twenty-four hours from vine to brine.”
January 1996, CMJ New Music Monthly, pg. 42:
The Scene Is Now wasn’t a joke band, despite this comp’s groaner of a title and songs about coconuts, Dinah Shore, and what makes a good pickle ("It’s just 24 hours from vine to brine/But you gotta let ‘em soak for a long long time").
The Town Talks (Alexandria, LA)
Can-do spirit: Tradition preserves fruits, veggies and families
Jul. 31, 2013
FOND DU LAC, Wis.—Joyce Kindschuh believes in the adage: “24 hours from vine to brine.”
She’s talking about pickles — garlic dill pickles to be exact. The kind that crunch and snap in your mouth.