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8 Easy Foods You Can Grow From Scraps

Growing with parts of plants normally considered as waste does an amazing job at not only reducing waste, but shifting our perspective and deepening our relationship with the cycle of growing food.

Here's 8 to start with, my advise, save this page and the next time you're cooking, aim to regrow atleast 2 scraps.

1. Celery

Celery is one of the easiest foods to grow from leftover scraps. Just cut off the bottom or base of your celery (leaving 3-5cm of stem at the root section) and lay it in a bowl with just a bit of warm water in the bottom. Keep the bowl in direct sunlight as long as possible each day and after about a week, you will begin to see the leaves thickening and growing along the base. When this happens, you can transplant your celery in soil and wait for it to grow to full length.

2. Lettuce

Lettuce, Bok Choy and cabbage are relatively easy to grow from scraps. Instead of throwing out those leftover leaves, simply place them in a bowl with just a bit of water in the bottom. Keep the bowl somewhere that gets good sunlight and mist the leaves with water a couple of times each week. After 3 or 4 days, you will notice roots beginning to appear along with new leaves. After two weeks, when the lettuce sprouts new leaves and roots, you should plant it out into potting soil for prolonged growth

3. Sweet Potatoes

Sweet potatoes can be grown much like regular potatoes. You just have to cut the sweet potato in half and suspend it using toothpicks above a container of shallow water. Roots will begin to appear in just a few days and sprouts will be seen on top of the potato around that same time. Once those sprouts reach about 15cm or so in length, just twist them off and place them in a container of water. When the roots from this container reach a couple of cms in length, you can plant them in soil.

4. Garlic

Garlic is really easy to grow and can be done from just one clove. Pull one off and plant it with the roots facing down in potting soil. Use a deep pot which is at least 1ft wide and plant one clove per pot. Garlic likes plenty of direct sunlight so in warmer weather, keep it outdoors in the sun during the day. Once you notice that new shoots have established, cut the shoots back and your plant will produce a bulb. You can take part of this new bulb and plant again. Full bulbs typically take 9 months to mature; they are ready when around half of the leaves turn yellow

5. Capsicum

You can grow a number of capsicum and chillis from the seeds that are leftover. Just collect the seeds and plant them in potting soil and keep in direct sunlight unless it is warm outside and then you can just plant them in your garden area. Capsicum grow relatively fast and don’t require a lot of care. Once you get a new crop, just save some of the seeds for replanting again.

6. Spring Onion

Perhaps the easiest of all of the methods in this article, Spring Onions can be regrown from their white root bases, growing only in water. Cut the green top of the spring onion, leaving 3-5cm of the white root base intact. Place this section into a shallow jar and submerge half of the plant in water. Leave in a sunny spot and change the water every other day. Harvest directly from the jar when ready.

7. Coriander

Coriander can be grown from scraps as well. Just place the bottom of the stem in a glass of water and leave in a bright area, near a windowsill perhaps. When the roots grow around 5cm long, you can transplant the Coriander into a pot and you will notice new sprigs in just a few weeks

8. Carrot Tops

Unfortunately we can’t grow whole new carrots from cuttings but we can grow nutritious carrot tops quite easily. These leafy greens high in vitamin C and K. Cut a 2-3cm section from the top of a carrot. Carrot cuttings have a tendency to rot which can have problems down the line, so dry it out over 3-4 days by leaving it in a cool, dry place. Place the dry cutting into potting soil. Submerge most of the cutting in the soil so only the top of the carrot is exposed and keep it in a sunny spot. Harvest the carrot tops after 2-3 weeks

Planting with seeds

  • Experiment with growing seeds by separating them from any fleshy plant matter.

  • Dry your seeds by placing them onto paper towels for up to a week. Plant seeds into soil and keep moist