Green Living Lifestyle Tips & Tricks for Renters

8 Foods You Can Regrow from Scraps in Your Apartment

Growing your own food from scraps is easier than you’d think, even if you’re doing it inside your apartment. Most of the time, all you need is a glass, some water, and a little bit of time to get your plants ready for potting. In return, you’ll get fresh, delicious produce that will both save you money and help you cut down on food waste. These 8 foods are great starting projects for anyone who wants to start a little produce garden in their apartment:

Lettuce

 

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Lettuce is one of the easiest foods to regrow, and you don’t even need to pot it to get a fresh bunch of crunchy leaves. Alongside cabbage and bok choy, salad doesn’t need soil to grow new leaves, so it’s a great starting project. Just keep about 1 inch of the lettuce base, put it in a jar or bowl with ½ inch of water, and place it in direct sunlight. After 3 to 4 days, you’ll notice both leaves and roots growing from your scraps. Refresh the water every few days, and you’ll have new leafy greens in no time, no potting required. Of course, you can also plant the newly formed greens in a pot with some regular soil, so you can get more leaves out of the plant. 

Garlic 

 

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Garlic is also very easy to regrow, and you’ll only need a single clove to get you started. Save a clove until it grows a new green top, and place it in a shot glass full of water. After a few days, it will grow sprouts and roots. Use the sprouts as you would use green onions, or pot the newly developed roots into a pot to keep them growing. While a fully formed head of garlic is difficult to grow indoors, you can enjoy the greens throughout the year. You can also pot any garlic clove directly, but it will take longer to sprout. 

Ginger 

 

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Ginger root is another great starting project, especially if you don’t have a green thumb. First, you need to find a piece of root that has growth buds on it (those little eyes on the surface of the root). Plant it in a pot with some good soil and fertilizer, and place it in a warm, sheltered spot, where it has access to filtered sunlight. Make sure the buds face upwards, and the bottom of your recipient has drainage holes. After a few months, you’ll notice new shoots, which means you can already reuse the ginger. Keep some scraps from your new batch and repeat the process as many times as you’d like. You can grow a limitless supply of ginger.

Celery

 

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Celery is a great plant to regrow in an apartment, since it’s easy to care of. Start by cutting off 2 inches off the base of your celery and insert some toothpicks around it, about ½ inches from the bottom. Then, put it in a shallow bowl or jar, and submerge 1 inch of the root in water. Make sure the container gets direct sunlight, and change the water every couple of days while keeping the root submerged. Wait for up to a week and then pot the sprouts in soil suitable for vegetables and herbs. Celery doesn’t do very well in high heat, so move it to shady spot if it gets too warm outside and keep the soil moisturized. You’ll have a fresh batch of celery in no time!

Green onions

 

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Green onions aren’t just easy to plant and maintain, but you can also regrow them indefinitely. First, slice off about 1 inch from the ends of the bulbs, leaving the roots attached. Then place them with the root side down in a small jar with just enough water to cover the roots, but not the top. Keep them on a windowsill in direct sunlight and change the water at least once a week, preferably every three to four days. When the shoots grow to five inches long, you can pot them in some fresh soil, and regularly snip off what you need. The best part is that as long as you keep the ground moist and fertilize it from time to time, the onions will grow indefinitely. 

Lemons


To grow lemons indoors, make sure you go for Meyer lemons, as they have smaller, shrub-like trees and produce a lot of fruit. Start by cleaning and drying your lemon seeds. Then, plant them and make sure you fertilize the soil regularly if it’s growing season (spring-fall). Keep your lemon tree in an area with direct sunlight, and keep the soil moist but not wet. Also, moisturize the leaves with water from time to time. After the tree begins to show, repot it in a large container and prune it regularly to make sure it doesn’t grow too large. Keep in mind this a long-term project, as you first need to grow the tree and then wait for it to bear fruit, which will take up to a year to ripen. 

Avocado

 

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To regrow avocado, wash the seed and either suspend it over a jar with a couple of toothpicks or place it above a glass bottle. Fill the container with water, so it covers the bottom of the seed, and place it somewhere warm, but not in direct sunlight. It will take about six weeks for a stem and roots to appear, so make sure you check the water regularly and add more as needed. When the stem reaches about six inches, cut it down to three and wait for leaves to appear. Then pot the seed while leaving about half of it above ground, and you’ve got yourself an avocado tree! 

Herbs

 

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Besides fruits and veggies, herbs like basil and cilantro are also easy to regrow, as long as you buy stems. Start by cutting the stems down to 4 inches and placing them in a glass of water. Ensure the leaves are above the water line, as they can rot. Then, place the glass in a bright area of your home, but not in direct sunlight. The roots will begin growing in a few days, but don’t pot the plant until they’re about two inches long. Once they’ve grown enough, move the herb to a pot with fresh soil, and make sure it gets at least 6 hours of direct sunlight per day. While herbs are the least difficult to grow on this list, you will need to repot them more often because of how fast some of them grow.  

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About the author

Irina Lupa

Irina Lupa is a creative writer for RENTCafé, where she covers market trends and topics relevant to today’s renters. Before developing a passion for real estate, she focused on fields ranging from automotive electronics to digital business development, digging into tech news from a critical perspective. Irina holds a B.S. in Journalism and Mass Communication. You can connect with Irina via email.

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