Growing your own food is a great way to get kids involved in the garden. It is also a wonderful achievement, sitting down to a meal created from homegrown foods. This is why I want to give you some tips for growing fruit and vegetables from scraps.
Tips for Growing Fruit and Vegetables from Scraps
Vegetables like lettuce, celery, and bok choy are easy options to start with. Any vegetable that grows from a “head” is essentially the easiest table scrap to grow into new vegetables. Cut off about 1 inch of the base of the plant. Get a shallow cup and place this vegetable scrap into ½ inch of water.
You’ll want to put leafy vegetable scraps in a sunny area and make sure you keep the water at about ½ inch at all times. Soon you’ll see that new vegetables grow and you can harvest them. Continue to repeat the process to have your own stock of leafy vegetables grown from table scraps.
Bulb Type Veggies
Things like onions, leeks, fennel and so on are easily grown into new food to eat. You’ll just cut off the end of these bulb type veggies where the small roots are showing. Take the root ends and place them into a container with ½ inch deep water. You’ll want to make sure the water covers the roots only and is always kept at this level.
For some more mature roots from these bulb type veggies, they may grow better in soil. Practice the same steps above but instead, keep the soil moist and use enough soil to cover the roots.
Regrow Citrus Fruits
Now that you know how to grow a couple of vegetable options from table scraps, you probably want to know what fruits you can grow from table scraps. You can regrow citrus fruits like lime, lemon, kumquats, and oranges. Basically, any citrus fruit that grows well in a container and has seeds inside can be regrown into fresh fruits at home.
Gather your citrus fruit seeds and keep them moist. You’ll then take the seeds and place them in soil with plastic over the top of the container to create a mini-greenhouse effect. This greenhouse will need to stay intact until the seeds start to sprout. While this can make new fruit from table scraps, tree-like plants will take several years to blossom, so in the meantime keep them watered and enjoy the fresh scent of citrus-like houseplants.
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Avocados are easily regrown from table scraps too. Clean off the pit of your avocado really well, place about 3-4 toothpicks into the pit making sure that the toothpicks are spaced about one-third from the pit’s pointy end.
Use the toothpicks to support your pit as you place it over a glass of water that’s filled just enough to ensure the pointy end of your avocado pit touches the water. Keep the water fresh at all times. As soon as the avocado pit has grown roots, it’s time to transplant to a pot that has soil in it. Keep the bottom half of the pit covered in the soil while the top half stays exposed to the air. This will grow into a new avocado in a short amount of time. Again as the citrus trees, it will take several years for this plant to grow, mature and blossom.
Sweet potato are also very easy to grow and with these tips on how to grow sweet potatoes, you will be growing some for yourself in no time at all. Propogation can be done by planting slips not by cutting up the potato and planting it. I prefer to get slips from organic sweet potatoes, but that is just personal choice. There are a couple of ways I use to get these ‘slips.’
Here are 18 different cards with information on how to grow 19 fruits and vegetables from scraps. They would be great laminated and held together with a binder ring for future use.
Growing fruit and vegetables from scraps of foods that you don’t eat isn’t that unusual. People have been practicing this method for many centuries. If you grew up in a farming household, then you probably say your parents or grandparents using this method to grow fruits and vegetables from table scrapes. It’s always good to have a resource of ways to grow your own fresh food.
This Gardening Journal to help you on your gardening journal.