So, I went cheap on my veggie garden this summer. Like REALLY cheap. Instead of taking a big trip to the nursery and buying baby plants and/or seeds, I decided to see if I could grow some kitchen scraps. I am excited to report that it seems to be working (at least so far).
Huh? Kitchen scraps? What?
Well, it all started one day when I was making something with green onions. I hacked off the bottoms and instead of tossing the little root ends in the trash, I decided to go stick them in the garden and see what would happen. They grew! And I could go pull one and stick the end back in the dirt and it would grow again! I love having green onions handy like that. So, I decided to see what else I could get to re-grow.
I picked celery and romaine lettuce for my next attempt. These guys got a fresh cut to the bottom of the heart (since they didn’t already have roots starting like the green onions) and kept them in a little cup of water on the kitchen windowsill. They started growing leaves right away. I kept them in the window and just changed the water every couple of days. Eventually I had the starts of some roots. So, into the garden they went.
Celery didn’t miss a beat, but I was worried that I might lose the romaine. So, I watered and watered and told him nice things and he got his bearings and started to thrive. One of each is not going to be enough to keep me from having to go to the grocery store, so I think I will have to try my windowsill technique on some more kitchen scraps until I have a more robust little crop.
I also planted the end of a sweet potato that I had left sitting around long enough that it has sprouted. The vine is doing great, I am hopeful that I might wind up with home-grown sweet potatoes at some point as well (I might not, someone was telling me something about having to plant the eyes of potatoes…so I don’t really know what is going to happen, it will be fun to find out!
An extra surprise treasure was that once I started watering my kitchen scraps, a little, baby tomato plant sprouted up. Poor thing was probably a seed from one of last year’s abandoned cherry tomatoes. At least now he has a reason to grow up and he won’t just be a lonely seed waiting for his moment of greatness.
One unintended consequence of kitchen scrap gardening is that I now have an overwhelming urge to start composting. Why not let the rest of those kitchen scraps go to good use? I’ll let you know when/if I get around to it.