Grow Vegetables For Free
Fresh foods such as fruit and vegetables are essential components of a balanced diet. However, purchasing them every week from the store or market can be expensive – especially if you are partial to seasonal produce.
For many, nothing beats the appeal of home grown food. Growing your own fruit or vegetables is a great way to ensure you have a regular supply without the sometimes extortionate cost. It also allows you to keep your food free of pesticides and other chemicals.
If tending to a vegetable garden doesn’t take your fancy, don’t worry because you can actually grow your own food in your kitchen – from lots of different scraps that would typically be thrown away!
It’s simple, fun and you can get the whole family involved.
Read on for full instructions on how to regrow your own food using kitchen scraps.
Leeks, green onions, fennel and spring onions
The leftover white root ends of spring onions, leeks and green onions are great for replanting. Simply place the root ends in a glass jar with a little water so that they are not fully submerged. In three to five days the green leafy part of the plant should begin to grow. Make sure you change the water daily to give it the best chance of shooting. Once the the greens have fully grown just snip off the bits that you need and leave the root in the water to continue growing.
Celery, cabbage, romaine lettuce and bok choy
These vegetables can be regrown using a similar method to the above but may require a little more tender loving care. Submerge the roots of your celery, lettuce, romaine lettuce or bok choy in a shallow bowl of water, leaving the tops uncovered. Place it in a sunny spot and within a week leaves should start to sprout. Be sure to freshen up the water every few days and give your plant a quick spray with water every so often to keep the top moist.
Once leaves begin to show, transfer your plant to a pot of soil, leaving only the leaves on show. Within a few weeks the plant will sprout a whole new head. After a few months your plant will be fully grown and ready for cooking.
Onions are another easy vegetable to regrow. All you need to do is chop off the root-end of the onion and plant it facing upwards and cover it with a light dusting of soil (about half an inch). Place the pot in a sunny position on your window sill and make sure it’s kept moist. When new onions grow, separate and plant them elsewhere, leaving the roots attached. It can take a few months for onions to reach full maturity, and it may help to cut the leaves every so often to promote full growth.
Ginger is another easy herb to regrow from leftovers, and once you get started you will have a continuous supply to hand. Better yet, it makes a lovely house plant!
To begin with, soak a chunk of ginger rhizome (the thick, knobbly bit used for cooking) in water overnight. The next day, submerge it in a pot of soil and make sure the smallest buds are facing upwards. It will take about a week for the first shoots to show, so water regularly and make sure it’s placed in indirect natural light. Once your ginger has grown into a plant, pull it up and use what you need. Replant to repeat the process.
Not many people like to eat mushroom stalks, but they come in handy for regrowing this nutritious vegetable. Mushrooms tend to prefer humid, moist conditions and a mixture of compost and soil in order to grow. They will need warm filtered light during the day and cool temperatures at night.
To prepare your mushroom plant, get your pot ready then plant the mushroom stalk in the soil – leaving the top exposed above the surface. If the cutting takes, new growth should be relatively quick and a whole new head should develop. Cut off so you can use for cooking and plant the stalk to repeat the process.
If you’re looking for the perfect kitchen to display your magical regrown foods, take a look at our selection of kitchen designs for some inspiration.