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ripen into (something)

1. Of a food, to become ripe or mature over time and enter into a new form, state, or condition. We must first press the curds to get rid of excess moisture before they begin ripening into cheese. Bees mix a special secretion with the nectar as they collect it from flowers. They then deposit the mixture into the combs of the hive, and it eventually ripens into honey.
2. Of a person, to change, develop, or mature over time until one enters into a new state, condition, or type of person. She was pretty brash and headstrong when she first took over the company, but she has ripened into a strong, reliable, and steady-handed leader over the last 10 years. As he ripened into adulthood, Jake left much of his boyish wonder and naïveté behind.
3. Of a situation or circumstance, to grow or develop into some new, more complex or deep-seated state or condition. Many believe the rumblings of the population are going to ripen into full-blown rebellion. Any relationship will have its highs and lows, but those couples who can communicate effectively and look past their own individual insecurities will eventually ripen into strong, happy unions.
See also: ripen

ripen up

To grow ripe; to become mature enough to harvest or pick. Make sure you plant your tomatoes in a spot that gets plenty of sunshine, or else it will take a whole lot longer for them to ripen up.
See also: ripen, up
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

ripen into something

1. Lit. to ripen and become something recognizable. This little green ball will ripen into an apple.
2. Fig. to mature into something. This problem is going to ripen into a real crisis if we don't do something about it right now. The small matter ripened into a large problem in a short time.
See also: ripen
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Ripeners acted as owners, ripening green bananas and marketing them within the EC.
Response of sugarcane varieties to the chemical ripener glyphosate.
The other familiar old variety, Tilton, is a late ripener.
It has loose clusters, is thick-skinned; there's no mildew, and it is a late ripener. It's on VSP with catch wires.
It is an early ripener and produces a pleasant, dry white.
Recommended varieties include 'Flamenco', similar to a Cox, 'Bolero', an early ripener and 'Charlotte', a versatile cooking variety.
This indigenous grape is an early ripener, and produces a pleasant, dry white.
Typically, Malbec is a thin-skinned, mid-season ripener. It is sensitive to frost and has a proclivity toward shatter.
"It's an early ripener, a week or 10 days ahead of Pinot noir."
A late ripener, Sylvaner is also a difficult grape to grow, hence today many producers are ripping it out and replacing it with other varietals.
The crazy thing is that it really does seem to work - especially when the vineyard is located in rich, moist, soil in a warm climate, provided there isn't so much stress that the vine suffers permanently and provided the grape variety is a relatively early ripener.
Many growers noted that Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot, both late ripeners, were still on the vine in a number of places, however.
Another way to beat the problem is to grow varieties which are naturally early ripeners. I must put in a good word for British-bred Cherry Falls (D.