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Grow an Endless Supply of Fruits & Veggies from Kitchen Scraps

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Do you often find yourself tossing away the leftover bits of fruits and vegetables after meals? Think twice before discarding those mushroom stems, onion ends, or pineapple tops.

These scraps aren’t destined for the trash or compost pile; you can actually regrow them into new plants. By using various parts like the roots, stems, seeds, and even the tops of these fruits and veggies, you can cultivate fresh produce from your kitchen leftovers.

The issue of food waste is a serious problem affecting our society and the environment. Not only does it squander essential nutrients that could help alleviate global hunger, but it also increases greenhouse gas emissions as rotting organic matter releases methane.

However, by regrowing plants from your kitchen scraps, you can reduce food waste and supplement your meals with fresh, homegrown produce effortlessly. This method is particularly simple, cost-effective, and you don’t need a green thumb—or even soil!

This guide will show you how to turn your food scraps into a thriving edible garden, helping you save money and promote sustainability.

Which Vegetables Can You Regrow From Scraps?

Did you know that many of the veggies you often toss into the compost bin can actually sprout new life? It’s not just a neat trick for your garden—it’s a practical strategy to save money on starting a new vegetable garden and reducing waste in your kitchen.

Utilizing a plant’s natural ability to regenerate from parts like stems, seeds, or roots not only maximizes your garden’s potential but also lessens your kitchen waste.

If the idea of giving your vegetable scraps a second chance excites you, that’s great! But before you start burying every scrap, it’s important to know that not all vegetable scraps will sprout new growth.

Generally, you need parts that can develop roots, like stems or specific other plant segments. You can even try regrowing some types of fruits and veggies from the seeds or pits left over from your meals.

However, keep in mind that not all seeds or scraps will work. Many store-bought fruits and veggies are irradiated to stop them from sprouting and extend their shelf life, which can hinder their ability to grow.

Also, if produce was harvested before it was fully ripe, its seeds might not be developed enough to be viable. A quick tip: you can test a seed’s potential by soaking them in water—if they sink, they’re more likely to grow.

Here’s a quick list of common veggies and herbs that you can easily start from scraps:

  • Potatoes and Sweet Potatoes
  • Onions, Garlic, Leeks, and Shallots
  • Celery
  • Bulb Fennel
  • Root crops like Carrots, Turnips, Parsnips, and Beets
  • Leafy greens like Lettuce and Bok Choy
  • Cabbages
  • Herbs like Basil, Mint, and Cilantro

Ready to reduce waste and watch your kitchen scraps take root? Let’s dive into how you can breathe new life into these leftovers, potentially turning them into flourishing parts of your garden!

Regrowing Potatoes from Scraps

Almost everyone knows that potatoes can sprout new plants from their peelings. To do this, you’ll want to use peelings that have little sprouts, known as eyes. Cut these peelings into pieces about two inches long, making sure each piece has two or three eyes.

Regrowing Potatoes from Scraps
Credit: wikiHow

Let them dry overnight. The next day, bury them about six inches deep in your garden soil, ensuring that the eyes are facing upwards. In just a few weeks, you should start seeing the early signs of potato growth.

To propagate potatoes using scraps, first cut them into chunks ensuring each has at least one eye. Leave these pieces out at room temperature overnight to dry slightly. Plant them about a foot apart in your garden, and soon enough, you’ll notice new plants emerging.

Even small sections of potato skin with a visible eye can be replanted to yield new plants. For larger potatoes, like those used for baking, simply slice them into sections with several eyes.

Let these sections dry for a day or two to help prevent rot, then plant them in either a garden bed or a container filled with a well-draining potting mix. After a few months, you’ll be ready to harvest a fresh crop of potatoes.

To use your potato scraps effectively, let them dry slightly overnight and plant them just as you would with traditional seed potatoes, with the eyes facing up. This method ensures the potato pieces don’t rot before sprouting.

When growing potatoes from scraps, opt for pieces that already show sprouting eyes. This indicates they haven’t been treated to inhibit growth. Cut the potato into sections, each with one or two eyes, and allow them to dry until they feel dry to the touch.

Plant these about a foot apart in eight inches of soil, or even in a five-gallon bucket. Within a few months, you’ll have your very own homegrown potatoes ready for cooking.

Regrowing Sweet Potatoes from Scraps

Sweet potatoes offer a fun and straightforward way to experiment with regrowing vegetables. Unlike regular potatoes, sweet potatoes don’t require the presence of “eyes” to grow. Instead, you can start a new plant just by using a whole sweet potato or a section of one.

Here’s a simple method to get started: Cut a sweet potato in half and use toothpicks to suspend it above a jar filled with water. Make sure the cut side is facing down. Within a few days, you’ll see roots beginning to form at the bottom and sprouts emerging from the top.

Once these sprouts are about six inches long, gently twist them off and submerge them in a new container of water until roots form, which typically takes a few days.

Regrowing Sweet Potatoes from Scraps
Credit: Urban Growth London

Once you see a robust set of roots on your sprouts, they’re ready to be planted in soil. This method works best if started indoors early in the year, around February to April, to avoid any late frosts. Keep the sprouting sweet potato in a sunny spot and change the water regularly to encourage healthy growth.

Growing sweet potatoes from slips—sprouts that form from the potato—is not just practical but also ensures a continuous supply. To maximize your chances of a good yield:

  • Use a jar filled with water to suspend your halved sweet potato, securing it with toothpicks.
  • Position the jar in a location that receives plenty of sunlight.
  • As the slips grow, maintain them in water until they’re sturdy enough to be planted in soil.
  • Sweet potatoes are sensitive to cold, so wait until any risk of frost has passed before planting them outdoors, usually by late May or early June.

Over the summer months, the plants will grow large tubers underground. Harvest your sweet potatoes before the first frost in autumn or when the leaves start to yellow and die back.

Regrowing Green Onions

Regrowing green onions from kitchen scraps is delightfully simple and incredibly rewarding. These vegetables often come with their roots still attached, making them perfect candidates for a quick regrowth project. Here’s how you can have a continuous supply of green onions right from your windowsill:

First, save the white ends of your green onions after chopping; these are your ticket to an endless supply. Place these rooted ends in a jar filled halfway with water. Set the jar in a spot that gets plenty of sunlight, like a sunny windowsill.

Remember to change the water every couple of days to keep it fresh. Within a week, you’ll notice new shoots sprouting, ready to be snipped and used in your cooking.

If you prefer, you can also transition them to soil. Plant the rooted ends in a container with potting soil, ensuring it’s placed in a well-lit area. This method not only sustains their growth but might even boost it.

Regrowing Green Onions
Credit: A Piece Of Rainbow

For those who use green onions regularly, this method means you might never need to buy them again. Simply cut the onions about an inch above their roots and place them in water.

It’s a straightforward process: the onions regrow quickly, providing fresh greens in no time. When they’re tall enough, harvest the green shoots and leave the white roots in water—they’ll just keep growing!

Regrowing Celery

Regrowing celery from its base is a simple and satisfying way to reduce kitchen waste and enhance your green thumb. Like lettuce, celery thrives when you start the regrowth process in water. All you need is the bottom two inches of a celery bunch—this is where the magic happens!

Here’s a quick guide to get you started:

  1. Preparation: Cut off the bottom two inches of your celery bunch. This part is usually thrown away, but it’s actually the key to regrowing!
  2. Setup: Grab a shallow dish and fill it with just enough water to submerge the cut base slightly. Make sure it’s not too deep—keeping the top of the base exposed to air is crucial.
  3. Sunlight and Water: Place the dish in a spot that gets plenty of sunlight. Celery loves light! Change the water every couple of days to keep it fresh and encourage growth.
  4. Observation and Growth: Within a week, you’ll start to see new leaves emerging from the center of the base and roots beginning to extend. This is your cue that the celery is ready for the next step.
  5. Planting: Once your celery shows significant leaf growth, it’s time to move it to soil. Plant it in a pot or garden, covering the roots and base but leaving the new leaves exposed to the air.
  6. Care and Harvest: Keep the soil moist, as celery has a high water content and thrives in moist conditions. With adequate care, your celery will develop into a full stalk. You can start harvesting when the plant looks healthy and the stalks are well-developed.
Regrowing Celery
Credit: Allrecipes

Re-Grow Bulb Fennel

Regrowing bulb fennel from scraps is a straightforward and sustainable gardening trick, similar to how you might regrow celery. Here’s a simple guide to help you cultivate your own fennel right at home:

  1. Preparation: Start by cutting off the base of the fennel bulb, ensuring you leave about an inch of the bottom intact. This section should include the root system which is crucial for regrowth.
  2. Rooting in Water: Place the freshly cut base in a shallow container filled with water. Make sure only the bottom part is submerged to prevent rotting.
  3. Placement: Set the container in a location that receives plenty of sunlight, such as a sunny windowsill. This environment is ideal for encouraging the roots to strengthen and new shoots to sprout.
  4. Observation and Care: Monitor the water level daily, adding more as needed to keep the base submerged. Within a few days to a week, you should start to see green shoots emerging from the center of the base.
  5. Transplanting to Soil: Once the roots are robust and the shoots appear healthy, it’s time to move your fennel into soil. Plant it in a pot or directly in your garden, ensuring the shoots remain above the surface.
Re-Grow Bulb Fennel
Credit: Gardening Know How

Regrowing Lettuce, Bok Choy, and Cabbage

Regrowing lettuce, Bok Choy, and cabbage from scraps is an eco-friendly and simple way to make the most of your vegetables. Instead of tossing those remaining leaves into the bin, try this green thumb technique:

  1. Preparation: Save the leftover bases from your lettuce, Bok Choy, or cabbage—about two inches should do.
  2. Initial Setup: Place these bases in a shallow bowl with a small amount of water, just enough to cover the bottoms.
  3. Location and Care: Set the bowl in a spot that receives plenty of sunlight. To encourage growth, mist the leaves lightly a couple of times a week with water.
  4. Observing Growth: Within a few days, you’ll see roots starting to form along with fresh, new leaves.
  5. Transplanting: Once the new growth looks robust—typically after a few days—it’s time to move your plant to soil, which will support continued growth.
Regrowing Lettuce
Credit: Gardener’s Path

For romaine lettuce specifically, the process is just as straightforward and quite similar to how you might regrow green onions or celery:

  • Cut and Save: After cutting off the portion of the lettuce you’ll eat, keep a couple of inches of the romaine heart.
  • Water Growth: Place this base in water. New leaves will soon begin to sprout from the center.
  • Maintenance: Remove any outer leaves that wilt or die off.
  • Soil Transplant: Once the base has developed enough new growth, transfer it to soil for more substantial growth.

This method is particularly handy when preparing meals like Caesar salads. Keep the base of the romaine used in your salad, place it in a dish with a little water under sunlight, and watch as it regenerates enough fresh leaves for your next salad or sandwich.

For a more focused growth:

  • Setup: Cut the lettuce while preserving about an inch of the base. Place this in a bowl with water barely covering the base.
  • Sunlight Exposure: Ensure it’s in a sunny spot and change the water every other day to keep it clean.
  • Growing Phase: Within two weeks, you should see both new roots and leaves. Now, it’s ready to be planted in soil.
  • Harvesting: Harvest the leaves once they reach about four inches—perfect for baby leaf salads.

Regrowing Garlic

Growing your own garlic is surprisingly simple and can be incredibly rewarding. You only need one clove to get started. Here’s how to turn a single garlic clove into a full bulb of garlic:

  1. Starting with a Clove: Next time you’re in the kitchen, set aside one clove from your garlic bulb. Plant this clove in potting soil with the root end down and the pointy end up.
  2. Sunlight and Location: Garlic thrives in direct sunlight. If the weather permits, place your garlic outside where it can soak up plenty of sun. During colder months, a sunny window indoors works just as well.
  3. Care and Growth: As your garlic begins to sprout, you’ll notice green shoots emerging. Once these shoots are established, trim them back to encourage the garlic to invest its energy into producing a new bulb beneath the soil.
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  5. Harvesting Your Garlic: Your garlic is ready to harvest when the shoots start to yellow and tip over, typically in the spring or summer following planting.
Regrowing Garlic
Credit: Apartment Therapy

For those who enjoy cooking with fresh garlic, you can also grow it indoors in a pot. Just like outdoors, make sure it’s positioned in a spot that receives ample sunlight. This setup not only beautifies your space but ensures you have fresh garlic at your fingertips.

Alternatively, if you have a clove that’s begun to sprout, you can grow garlic greens:

  • Water Method: Place the sprouting clove in a shallow dish with about an inch of water. Set this on a sunny windowsill.
  • Harvesting Sprouts: As the green shoots grow taller, you can cut them to use in your dishes. They provide a mild garlic flavor that’s perfect for garnishing or adding to salads.

Regrowing Ginger from Scraps

Ginger is a flavorful root that’s a staple in many kitchens. However, most recipes only call for a small amount, leaving you with an excess that often goes to waste. Instead of throwing it out, you can easily regrow ginger from those leftover scraps. This sustainable approach reduces waste and ensures you always have fresh ginger on hand.

Here’s how to do it:

  • Look for Sprouts: Keep an eye on your ginger root. Once you see little green sprouts emerging, it’s ready to be regrown.
  • Prepare the Ginger: Take any piece with sprouts and soak it in water overnight. This helps stimulate root development.
  • Plant the Ginger: After soaking, plant the sprout in a wide, shallow pot filled with potting soil. Ensure the sprouts face up and the roots face down. Ginger roots spread horizontally, so a shallow pot works best.
  • Location and Care: Place the pot in an area with indirect sunlight. Ginger thrives in warm, humid conditions, making it perfect for indoor growth in cooler climates. Water the soil regularly to keep it moist but not waterlogged.
  • Harvest: In a few months, you’ll see the plant flourish. You can start harvesting small pieces by gently uncovering the soil and cutting off what you need. Cover the cut area back up to allow continued growth.
  • Continuous Supply: Always leave a portion of the root in the soil so it can regrow. This way, you maintain a continuous cycle of growth and harvest.
Regrowing Ginger from Scraps
Credit: Apartment Therapy

Regrowing Herbs from Cuttings

Propagating herbs like basil, mint, and cilantro from cuttings is a simple way to expand your kitchen garden. Just a small stem can produce a full, bushy plant.

Here’s how:

  • Take a Cutting: Snip a 4-inch stem from your herb plant, cutting just below a leaf node (where leaves emerge).
  • Prepare the Stem: Remove leaves from the bottom half, leaving a few on top. This helps the plant focus on root development.
  • Root in Water: Place the stem in a glass of water, ensuring no leaves are submerged (this can cause rot). Set the glass in an area with indirect sunlight, ideal for root growth.
  • Watch for Roots: Change the water every few days. Within a week or so, you should see roots starting to form. Once they’re about an inch long, they’re ready for soil.
  • Plant the Cutting: Transplant into a pot with potting soil, leaving enough room for growth but not too large (to retain moisture).
  • Grow On: Place the pot in a bright location and water regularly. Soon, you’ll have a full herb plant ready for harvest.
  • Repeat: As your new plants mature, take more cuttings to continuously increase your herb supply.
Regrowing Herbs from Cuttings
Credit: LearningHerbs

Growing Mushrooms from Scraps

Growing mushrooms from scraps is a rewarding but more involved process than regrowing some other kitchen scraps. It taps into your adventurous spirit and culinary curiosity while saving on grocery costs.

Here’s a quick guide:

  • Setup: Mushrooms thrive in warm, humid conditions, easier to manage indoors. Plant in a pot rather than directly in the garden to control these conditions.
  • Plant the Scraps: Start with just the mushroom stalks (often discarded in cooking). Carefully cut off the cap and plant the stem in nutrient-rich soil, leaving the top slightly exposed.
  • Care and Monitoring: Place the pot in a consistently warm, humid area. Water lightly every few days to keep the soil moist but not waterlogged. Watch for new growth, usually small buds on the exposed stem.
  • Harvest: Once the mushrooms fully develop, gently harvest them, leaving the remaining stem to encourage continued growth.
  • Create Spawn (Optional): For a deeper dive into mushroom cultivation, you can use the stems to create your own spawn. Chop the stems, mix with damp cardboard in a sealed container, and store in a dark, humid place until you see mycelium (mushroom roots) forming. Use this to grow even more mushrooms.
Growing Mushrooms from Scraps
Credit: GroCycle

Read more about Mastering the Market: Innovative Strategies for Mushroom Cultivation at Possum Bottom Farms

Carrots, Turnips, Radishes, Parsnips, Beets, and Other Root Vegetables

Regrowing the leafy greens from root vegetables like beets, carrots, turnips, and parsnips is a clever way to enhance your diet with nutrients without needing a full garden. While you can’t regrow the entire vegetable, the greens at the top are not only edible but packed with vitamins.

Here’s a simple guide to regrowing these nutritious greens:

  • Preparing the Tops: Start by cutting off about an inch from the top of your root vegetables where the leaves emerge. These tops contain the beginnings of new growth.
  • Setting Up: Place these tops in a shallow dish of water, ensuring that you don’t fully submerge them. Just enough water to cover the base is perfect.
  • Location: Set the dish on a windowsill that gets plenty of sunlight. The warmth and light are crucial for encouraging the greens to sprout.
  • Watching Them Grow: In just a few days, you should see fresh green shoots emerging. These greens are quick to sprout, and you can harvest them as soon as they look lush and full.
  • Ongoing Care: Change the water daily to keep it fresh and encourage healthy growth. Once the greens are well-established, and if you see roots starting to form, you can transplant them into soil if you wish.
  • Harvesting: Snip the greens to use in salads, smoothies, or as a sautéed side dish. They offer a fantastic nutrient boost.
Regrowing carrots
Credit: MorningChores

While you won’t end up with new root vegetables, the greens themselves are incredibly beneficial. Carrot tops, for instance, are rich in vitamins C and K and can be enjoyed blanched or sautéed. Here’s how to ensure you get the best out of them:

  • Dry the Cuttings: After slicing the top off the carrot, let it dry for a few days in a cool, dry place to prevent rot.
  • Plant in Soil: Place the dried cutting in potting soil, submerging it slightly so the very top is exposed.
  • Water and Sun: Keep the pot in a spot that gets plenty of sunlight and water when the top few centimeters of soil are dry.

In about two to three weeks, you’ll have vibrant carrot tops ready to be harvested.

Check The Ultimate Guide to Growing Carrots in Containers

Pineapple

Did you know you can grow your own pineapple from a leftover crown? It’s a surprisingly simple project that yields both a tropical houseplant and, eventually, a fresh pineapple! Here’s how to turn your grocery store pineapple into a budding plant:

  • Preparation: Start by slicing off the top of the pineapple, where the leaves are densest. Remove the remaining fruit flesh to expose the root buds at the base of the crown.
  • Rooting: Place the prepared crown in a glass of water, ensuring that only the base is submerged. Set this setup in a sunny spot—pineapples love sunlight!
  • Care and Maintenance: Change the water every couple of days to keep it fresh. If the weather permits, place the glass outdoors during the day to bask in direct sunlight and bring it inside when it cools down at night.
  • Transplanting: After you see roots developing—usually within a week or so—it’s time to move your pineapple crown into a pot filled with soil. Choose a pot that gives the roots room to expand.
  • Growing: Keep your potted pineapple in a sunny area. Pineapples can take up to 18 months to mature fully, so patience is key. During winter months, ensure it’s kept in a warm spot inside your home.
grow your own pineapple from a leftover crown
Credit: Farmers’ Almanac

Lemongrass

Growing your own lemongrass is a fantastic solution if you love the flavor but struggle to find it fresh in stores. Lemongrass, just like its name suggests, grows quite readily and can be a continuous source of freshness for your kitchen.

Here’s a straightforward guide to growing lemongrass from scraps:

  • Starting Off: Begin by cutting off the top of the lemongrass stalks you’ve used in cooking, making sure to leave about 1 to 2 inches of the base intact. This base should include the root part.
  • Rooting in Water: Take the trimmed base and place it in a glass or jar filled with enough water to cover half the stalk. Choose a sunny window ledge as your setup spot to ensure the plant gets plenty of light.
  • Care and Maintenance: Change the water every other day to keep it clean and encourage root growth. Within about a week, you should start to see new growth sprouting from the top of the stalk.
  • Transplanting: Once the roots look robust and you have a few inches of new growth, it’s time to transplant your lemongrass. You can either pot it in soil or plant it directly in your herb garden if the climate allows.
  • Harvesting: Continue to care for your lemongrass as it grows. You can begin to harvest once the new stalks reach a size you’re satisfied with. If kept well, lemongrass can become a perennial part of your garden.
Growing your own lemongrass
Credit: Crafty For Home

Regrowing Bell Peppers

Did you know you can easily grow bell peppers and hot peppers right from the seeds you usually discard? It’s a simple and gratifying project for any home gardener. Here’s how to get started:

  • Seed Preparation: After using your peppers, save some of the seeds for planting.
  • Planting: Sow these seeds in a small pot filled with potting soil.
  • Location: Place the pot on a windowsill where it will receive plenty of direct sunlight.
  • Care: Pepper plants are surprisingly low-maintenance. Just make sure they get enough sunlight and water them regularly.

Before you know it, these seeds will sprout into young pepper plants. Peppers grow fairly quickly, so it won’t be long before you see the fruits of your labor.

Growing Your Own Avocado Tree From a Seed

Growing your own avocado tree from a seed is not only a fun project but also a practical way to enjoy this nutrient-packed fruit. Here’s how to turn an avocado pit into a thriving plant:

  • Prepare the Seed: After you’ve savored your avocado, gently remove the seed and rinse it clean under water. Make sure to remove all the fruit flesh clinging to it to prevent rotting.
  • Set Up for Sprouting: Take three or four toothpicks and insert them at a slight upward angle around the circumference of the avocado seed. These will act as supports so you can suspend the seed over a glass or jar of water. Position the seed so the flat end (the broader part) is submerged in the water, covering about an inch of the seed.
  • Find the Perfect Spot: Place the setup in a warm area that gets bright, indirect sunlight. Direct sunlight can be too intense and might hinder the sprouting process.
  • Water Maintenance: Maintaining consistent water levels is crucial. Check daily and add water as needed to keep the base of the seed submerged.
  • Watch It Grow: Within three to six weeks, you should see roots and a stem start to emerge from the seed. Once the stem grows about six inches tall, trim it back to around three inches to encourage more robust growth.
  • Planting in Soil: When leaves start to form and the stem regrows, it’s time to plant the seed in soil. Fill a pot with well-draining potting soil and plant the seed, ensuring about half of it remains above the soil surface. This replicates avocados’ natural growing conditions.
Growing Your Own Avocado Tree From a Seed
Credit: Apartment Therapy

Pumpkins and Squash

Did you know the seeds from your pumpkins and squash aren’t just for roasting? They can also be the start of your own pumpkin patch! Here’s a simple guide on transforming those seeds into flourishing pumpkin plants:

  • Preparation: Start by rinsing the pumpkin or squash seeds under water to remove any clinging pulp or strings. This helps prevent mold and encourages germination.
  • Soaking: For better germination results, soak the seeds in warm water for a few hours. This softens the hard outer shell, making it easier for the sprout to break through.
  • Planting: Plant the seeds about an inch deep in a pot filled with potting soil or directly in your garden if temperatures are warm enough. Choose a sunny spot because pumpkins thrive in full sun exposure.
  • Care and Growth: Water the planted seeds regularly to keep the soil moist but not waterlogged. With adequate sunlight and water, you should see sprouts emerge in a couple of weeks.
  • Expanding Your Garden: If you’re feeling adventurous, you can even plant an entire pumpkin. Bury it in a sunny spot in your garden, and as it decomposes, it will nourish the seeds inside, helping them grow into robust pumpkin plants.
Pumpkins and Squash
credit: pinterest

Bean Sprouts

Growing your own bean sprouts is an easy and rewarding task, perfect for anyone who loves adding a fresh, crunchy element to their meals. Here’s how you can start sprouting beans right in your kitchen:

  • Starting the Sprouts: Begin with about a tablespoon of beans—mung beans or wheat berries work great. Place them in a jar and cover them with just enough water to submerge them completely. Let them soak overnight.
  • Draining and Rinsing: In the morning, drain the water from the jar, and return the soaked beans to it. Instead of sealing it with a lid, cover the jar with a clean towel. This allows air circulation while keeping out light and potential contaminants.
  • Repeat Rinsing: Each morning and evening, thoroughly rinse the beans under running water, then drain the water. Return the beans to the jar and cover again with the towel.
  • Watching Them Grow: Continue this process of rinsing and draining twice a day. After a few days, you’ll start to see the sprouts growing. Keep it up until they reach your preferred size for cooking and eating.
Growing your own bean sprouts
Credit: Menards

More Fruits & Veggies You Can Grow From Scraps

  • Cilantro (Coriander):

To grow cilantro from scraps, simply save the bottom part of the stems after using the leaves. Place these stem pieces in a glass of water and set them on a sunny windowsill. Once the roots reach about two inches long, you can pot them in soil. You’ll see fresh, new cilantro sprouting in just a few weeks!

  • Turnips:

Turnips, along with other root vegetables like beets and parsnips, can easily regrow from their tops. Cut off the top of the turnip, ensuring some flesh remains attached, and place it in a water-filled container. You’ll notice new green shoots sprouting rapidly. Allow the roots to strengthen before transplanting them into soil.

  • Cherries:

Growing a cherry tree from a pit is a long-term project but immensely rewarding. First, clean the cherry pit and place it in moist, nutrient-rich soil inside a lidded container. Store this in your refrigerator for about twelve weeks to simulate winter conditions—a process called stratification. After this period, you can plant it outside in a sunny spot.

  • Apples:

You can plant apple seeds to grow your own apple trees, though it’s a bit trickier. Dry out the seeds from an apple, then plant them. Keep in mind that apples require cross-pollination, so you’ll need to grow at least two trees for successful fruiting. This diversity also means each tree might produce slightly different types of apples.

  • Stone Fruits (Peaches, Nectarines, Plums):

Like cherries, these stone fruits can be grown from their seeds. After eating the fruit, clean and thoroughly dry the seeds, then plant them in nutrient-rich soil in a sunny area. Patience is key, as it takes a few years for the trees to mature and start bearing fruit, but the wait is rewarding.

  • Lemons:

If you’re interested in growing lemons, start with the seeds from a Meyer lemon for best results, especially if you’re planting indoors. Clean and dry the seeds, then plant them in nutrient-rich soil. If you live in a cooler climate, consider growing a dwarf variety indoors. Expect to see fruits in a couple of years, not immediately.

Explore Profitable Nut Trees to Grow: Which Varieties Are Worth Investing In

Creative Uses for Vegetable Scraps Beyond Composting

To minimize waste from your vegetable garden, consider utilizing every part of the plant to its fullest potential. For instance:

  • Not only harvest the roots of root vegetables but also enjoy their nutritious leaves.
  • Let some of your radishes flower and then gather the seed pods (and leaves) for eating.
  • Don’t overlook the leaves and shoots of pea plants; they are just as edible as the peas themselves.
  • Utilizing all edible parts of a plant ensures that you’re getting the most out of your garden and minimizing waste.

Now, let’s talk about what to do with those leftover vegetable scraps. Globally, food waste is a significant issue, but as a gardener, you have the power to tackle this problem right in your backyard.

While composting is a fantastic way to recycle nutrients back into the earth, it’s worth exploring other creative uses for your vegetable scraps before adding them to the compost pile. Here are a few ideas:

  • Brew them into a rich vegetable stock for various dishes.
  • Save them in a freezer bag labeled “Veggie Scraps” for future broths.
  • Transform them into organic, homemade dyes for fun craft projects.
  • Use them as extra feed for any livestock or backyard chickens you might have.

These strategies not only help in reducing waste but also in enhancing your self-sufficiency, saving money, and moving towards a more sustainable, zero-waste lifestyle. So, think twice before you toss those scraps away. There might be valuable uses for them that you haven’t considered yet!

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