Growing vegetables from seeds is cool, but growing them from kitchen scraps is totally badass. Does it require some time? Yes. Is going to the grocery store easier? Definitely. But if you’re crazy enough to attempt these there are a lot of benefits. Upcycling your basil stems and onion butts (heeheehee butts) will save you money and you can do it indoors. Just make sure you use fresh scraps (not stuff that’s been composting for a week) and remember to pay attention to your baby future plant, making sure it has the water and light it needs.
1. You can grow scallions from their discarded roots.
Growing scallions from their roots is arguably the easiest vegetable to regrow. Change the water every day and you will see results in a week. Find directions here.
2. You can grow garlic sprouts (which are edible!) from a garlic clove.
Or you could just use the garlic clove. Find directions to grow garlic sprouts here.
3. You can grow romaine lettuce from the bottom of a head of lettuce.
You don’t need to put romaine lettuce in soil, but if you do, the leaves will grow to twice the size. This also works for cabbage. Find directions here.
4. You can grow carrot greens from discarded carrot tops.
This looks like more of a fun experiment than something you’d actually want to eat. Carrot greens can be a little bitter, but you can try chopping them up with some garlic, vinegar, and honey to sweeten them. Find directions on how to grow them here.
5. You can grow new basil from basil cuttings.
An endless supply of basil?! Make sure to change the water often so the plant doesn’t get slimy. Directions here.
6. Lemongrass can grow from its discarded roots.
The bottom of a lemongrass stalk is too tough to use in cooking, so this is a nice way to avoid throwing out half the plant. After about three weeks of leaving the lemongrass stalks in water you should begin to see roots. Then you’ll need to plant the lemongrass in soil in a sunny location. Find directions here.
7. Celery can grow from a leftover celery bottom.
How crazy does this look?! After three days in water you should replant the celery bottom in soil. Find directions here.
8. Onions can grow from the root end of an onion.
It seems strange that you could just chop off an onion bottom and plant it in soil and something magical happens. Find directions here.
9. Bok choy can grow from bok choy scraps.
Very similar to growing celery. Find directions here.
10. An avocado pit will grow into an avocado tree.
Growing an avocado plant requires a lot of attention, and will take anywhere between five to thirteen years to produce avocados (if it ever does) . If you’re feeling ambitious and have a lot of free time, why not? Find directions here.
11. A sweet potato will sprout vines that may eventually grow new sweet potatoes.
This will take some real estate. Find directions here.
12. Ginger roots can sprout and grow more ginger.
It may take a few months for shoots to sprout and up to a year for the plant to grow harvest-worthy roots, but at least this project is low-maintenance. Find directions here.
13. A pineapple can grow a pineapple from its crown.
Yes, you can grow a pineapple indoors, but it will take up to three years. Find directions here.