When you are on a budget, re-growing your food scraps is one of the best ways to save money! In fact, there are many vegetables you can grow from scraps, whether it be from cut off ends, or from the seeds they bear. This will not only help keep your wallet fuller, but it is an incredibly sustainable way of living!
12 Vegetables You Can Regrow From Scraps
There are many different vegetables you can regrow from kitchen scraps. All you need is some water and a shallow pan to get started. In some instances, you don’t even need water, and can directly plant your sprouts into the soil.
You may have a couple cloves of garlic laying around – why not grow them? The key to successfully growing garlic to plant them in full sun, and to remember to chop off the tall stalk that sprouts from the bulb. Once you cut this piece off, the garlic bulb will instead put all of its energy into growing large bulbs for tasty consumption.
2. Potato or Sweet Potato
Cut about one-inch of a chunk from a potato that includes 1-2 eyes. Give the piece a day or two to dry out and skin over. Then, plant with the eye facing up.
During Halloween, you may take your pumpkin seeds and throw them in the oven to make some roasted pumpkin seeds (or you may just eat them raw – which is totally fine, and they taste amazing!), or you may throw them out. Why not plant some pumpkins from the seeds? Pumpkin is rich in nutrients like beta-carotene which protect your eyes from nasty free radicals which leads to poor eyesight. Find out how to grow pumpkins here.
Avocado trees are actually quite easy to grow, and they are beautiful plants to keep inside or outside the home (they have a better chance of fruiting outside, where they can be pollinated by bees). To find out how to grow an avocado tree from the seed, click here.
Cut off the last inch of each onion, so that you still have the bulb and roots (lower white part). Put these ends in mud, making sure to leave a portion of each stem sticking out above the soil. Water regularly, and your onions will start growing. You can take cuttings from the green portion of the plant, and it will still continue to regrow more greens. You can do this about 3 times before you will need to plant more bulbs.
Alternatively, if you have some onions that are already sprouting greens, you can place their root-end in a mason jar of water, and fresh greens will sprout on top.
Those carrot tops you usually toss into the garbage can actually be used to produce more carrots! You cannot physically regrow the carrot from the carrot top, but you can regrow the plant. Cut about one inch from the top of a carrot. Stick a toothpick into either side of the carrot stump and balance it on top of a small glass. Fill the glass up with water so that the water barely touches the bottom edge of the stump. Set this glass in light, but not in a window that has full sun. Continue to add water as it evaporates, and soon you will have sprouting roots from the carrot edge. You can now plant your carrot in mud!
Apples can be grown from the seeds inside, as with any fruit. To grow an apple tree, take the seeds from the fruit and lay them out to dry until there is no more moisture on the outside of the shell. Next, lay the seeds on some damp paper towel and place them in the fridge. Make sure the paper towel remains damp, so checking ever so often is a must. Once the seeds have been in the fridge for about one month, the seeds should have sprouted. Take your sprouted seedlings and place them in a small cup of potting soil, making sure that the soil remains moist but not wet with watering. When the plant starts to grow, make sure you transplant as needed, until you can finally grow your tree outside.
Soak your ginger root overnight and then cut it into pieces. Make sure that there are a couple of growth buds on each piece (the little bumps on the end of each “finger”), and plant the ginger with these growth buds pointing up or to the side (do not have them facing down). Then, water regularly, but not so much that the soil becomes soggy. Harvesting your ginger is easy since all you need to do is dig up pieces of the root, and cut off what you need, leaving what you don’t. It will continue to grow.
Growing romaine is the same as celery. Cut off about an inch from the bottom of the romaine stalk, let it sit in water to wait for roots and slightly longer growing leaves from the top, and then re-plant in the mud! Any time you want to harvest leaf lettuce from your garden, just pick the outer leaves but leave the inner leaves untouched. This will ensure that your lettuce continues to produce new leaves all season long.
Cut off the bottom inch of a bunch of celery, and place this piece in a bowl, with the cut side facing up. Add a little bit of water, just enough so that the bottom of the celery is submerged in water. Move this bowl into a sunny place in your home, and water for the leaves and roots to form. Then you can plant the celery in soil, covering everything cut the leaves, and within a couple of weeks, the stalks will start to grow back.
A lot of people have seen or heard that you can re-grow pineapples, and I am currently in the process of doing so (I will let you know how it goes!). To re-grow pineapple, I followed these steps.
12. Bok Choy
Same method as celery and romaine: see above.
*Note: You can also re-grow many other fruits since they have seeds that can be easily sprouted and turned into a plant. For example, I have used this method to re-grow tomato plants from tomato seeds, and mango plants from the mango seed.