What if I told you that you can regrow dozens of store-bought fruits and vegetables in your garden to enjoy again and again? All you need to give these plants a second life is a corner of your garden or a few pots of soil on your balcony. Before composting the pits or ends, try these techniques.
Organic or non-organic? In my experience, organic vegetables grow more easily and are tastier the second time around.
In water: These are the easiest to regrow, even if you don’t have a green thumb! When you get home from the grocery store, simply put them in a glass with a little water, just enough to cover the roots. I use scissors to snip off the amount I need for a recipe and let the roots soak in the water, which I change every two or three days. After a week, you’ll have brand-new green onions! You can use this method to regrow them up to five times.
In soil: You can also plant store-bought green onions! I recommend letting the roots soak for a week. Once they’re longer, you can plant them.
You can sprout a new avocado from the pit of your store-bought avocado! The process takes some patience and attention to detail, but the end result is worth it. First, remove and clean the pit. Insert four toothpicks or wooden skewers into the centre to form an X. Place the avocado pit in a small container of water, making sure the pointy part is out of the water. It’s important to change the water every two to three days to avoid mould. After a few weeks, the pit starts to crack open making way for a sprout!
At this point you can pot it, leaving the top of the pit (the part that was not in the water) exposed above the soil. Put your plant on a window sill or outside in the sun! Remember to bring the tree indoors over winter. It will take several years for the tree to mature in the Quebec climate.
You can regrow many leafy vegetables in water or soil. These include lettuce hearts, celery and leeks, to name but a few. Some vegetables are grown hydroponically—this is often the case with Boston lettuce. If you’ve bought it before, you’ve probably noticed its long roots, and these are what make it easy to regrow.
Carrot tops are delicious in salads and many other dishes. To make sure you always have some on hand, stick some carrot tops in a little water and change it every two or three days. It’s like magic! After a while, you can plant them and just grow the tops as needed all summer long!
A while ago, I broke off a branch of my basil plant by accident. We put the ends in water for two weeks, it grew roots and we planted it again. Since then, a new basil plant has been growing in the sun from my big windows, and we’ll plant it in the garden as soon as it’s summer! You can regrow a host of vegetables, herbs and fruits simply by putting them in water or planting them. Before you compost your vegetable scraps, check to see if you can use them to regrow your veggies. In addition to getting beautiful plants for free, you’ll also be enjoying fresh, home-grown food!