Pssssttt! Want to know a secret? Some of those kitchen scraps you throw out -- the base of your celery, green onions, and romaine lettuce -- can actually be grown into new plants. Yes, new plants! It's a somewhat slow process but it's simple and super fun to watch.
If you're interested in giving it a try, here are 6 great tips to help you get started.
1. Collect scraps
Step 1 in this adventure is collecting kitchen scraps to use to start new plants. Some of the more common foods to use are green onions, celery, romaine lettuce, bok choy, and garlic. The Food Revolution Network has great instructions for 19 different foods that can be regrown from scraps.
2. Soak in water
The second step is to take the plant part where new roots/shoots will form -- typically the base of many plants -- and soak it in a bowl or glass with fresh water. In about 1-2 weeks you will see roots start to sprout and new shoots growing out of the base of the plant. Make sure to change the water every couple of days to keep it from getting slimy.
3. Plant in soil
After baby roots have started to form, and the plant is developing new shoots it's time to move the plant from the water to a pot. Using fresh potting soil bury the plant so the new shoots are the only plant material peeking out. The roots and base should be fully under the soil surface.
After planting in potting soil, it's important to water your plants but not let them become waterlogged and soggy. Overwatering can cause the plants to start to rot under the soil surface. A spray bottle works well to mist them lightly every day if you have the tendency to be heavy handed with water. Missouri Botanical Garden explains why overwatering is bad and leads to plant death.
Unfortunately, this isn't a quick process. It can take months for your veggies to grow big enough to harvest edible portions. But be patient, because it will be worth the time and effort!
When your plants are finally mature enough and have reached the desired size, it's time to harvest! Cut off what you need using clean sharp scissors and enjoy!