Growing ginger indoors is a great way to add beautiful greenery throughout your home – and healthy, delicious flavor to dishes in your kitchen!
Although there is often confusion about whether ginger is a spice or an herb, one thing is for sure, it is has many uses in the kitchen. But beyond just flavoring dishes, teas and more, it also has many well-known health benefits too.
Those benefits include aiding in digestion, helping the circulatory system, and boosting the immune system. All the more reason to grow this beautiful plant right at home!
Here is a look at how to grow ginger indoors, and enjoy the taste and benefits of fresh ginger year round.
How To Grow Ginger Indoors
Propagating a new ginger plant all begins from the root of the plant. The roots have small nodules or “eyes” (think of a potato) that produce new growth.
Much like when planting a potato, slicing a portion of the ginger root can create a new plant. That is, as long as it has a nodule or two for sprouting.
There are several option for starting your own ginger plant, some of which work better than others. The most common is by purchasing ginger root straight from a nursery or greenhouse, or by taking a cutting from the roots of an existing ginger plant.
One of the great things about ginger is that it can be continually grown from cuttings. All without ever harming the original stock!
Although you can attempt to start ginger plants from roots purchased from your local grocery store, it can be difficult.
Using Store-Bought Ginger For Growing
For starters, many vegetables and herbs heading to a grocery store go through a heat process to kill off pathogens. And the process can often render the ginger root unable to sprout new growth. The other issue is that store-bought ginger can be treated with chemicals, and is often older and less likely to sprout.
If you do want to try the store-bought ginger route, be sure to purchase organic ginger that has not been eradicated or processed.
Of course, you can also purchase a living ginger plant right from the start too! Product Link : Live Ginger Plant
Planting Ginger Roots – Growing Ginger Indoors
Ginger is a heavy feeder, and requires fertile, well-drained soil to grow and develop maximum size and flavor. When planting or transplanting, always use a good-quality potting mix. Without good soil and drainage, the roots of ginger can easily rot and kill of the plant.
Choose a container that will allow for adequate root growth. Ginger needs a lot of space to develop. Pots that are least 8 to 10 inches in diameter work best. They allow for enough surface area for the roots to develop full flavor.
Potting Up Ginger
Cut your ginger before planting, being sure to allow for a few nodules on each root that will be planted. Set the ginger aside out in the air for a few days after cutting to allow the cutting area to scab over a bit.
Next, fill your pot with about 4 inches of potting soil in the bottom. Then, set your ginger root cuttings down into the soil, making sure the eyes or nodules are pointing up. Press the ginger root into the soil slightly to set it into place.
Next, cover the ginger root with more potting soil, adding enough that the top of the root is under a 1/2″ of soil. To finish, slightly moisten the soil, and let the waiting begin!
The Waiting Game – Growing Ginger Indoors
Unfortunately, ginger isn’t in a hurry to sprout. In fact, it can take upwards of 8 to 10 weeks to see the first sprouts pop through the soil. The key to success is all in keeping the soil moist and warm to encourage sprouting.
One way to do this is to cover the top of the pot with plastic or plastic wrap to help retain moisture and humidity in the soil and pot. Allow a few small holes for ventilation, but keep the moisture dome in place until the ginger root begins to sprout up through the soil.
Once it has come through the soil, simply remove the plastic lid or wrap. Then, place the plant in a warm location that receives plenty of indirect lighting.
In it’s natural setting, ginger grows best in shadier locations. By mimicking those same lower light level conditions indoors, it will help the plant grow strong and healthy.
Long Term Care & Harvesting – Growing Ginger Indoors
When it comes to long term care, proper watering and fertilizing are big keys to success. Ginger should be watered often enough so that the soil never dries out for more than a day at the most.
Slightly moist soil is best for growth, but be careful not to over water and saturate the soil. Overly wet soils will rot the plant’s roots if they are sitting in heavy moisture constantly.
As mentioned, ginger is a heavy feeder, so fertilizing is a must for promoting strong growth. Fertilize every 4 weeks with a light solution of an all-purpose, well-balanced organic fertilizer. This will give the plant plenty of nutrients to grow to full size.
You can harvest ginger as a young, tender root, or allow it to grow to full maturity and harvest with a more robust flavor.
Young ginger will have a lighter, more mild flavor. It is usually so tender, peeling is not needed. To harvest young ginger, gently lift the roots from the pot and carefully slice off a section. Place back into the pot immediately, covering with soil to keep the remaining roots and plant healthy.
To harvest more mature ginger, allow the plant to continue to grow until the roots have filled out, and the skin has toughened up. Mature ginger will require peeling before using, but the flavor is deeper, spicier, and more complex than young ginger.
To keep the growing cycle going, you can slice off a portion of the mature ginger to restart a new plant all over again – keeping the rest to use as needed.
Here is to growing fresh ginger indoors this winter and beyond! For more great plants to grow indoors, check out our entire Houseplant category on the blog.
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