Ginger (botanical: Zingiber officinale) is an indispensable ingredient in healthy cuisine. But all the healing ginger teas and exotically spicy curries with health benefits come at a price: before the tuber arrives in the shop, it has usually traveled around half the globe. To avoid long transport routes and the associated costs, growing ginger and to propagate the ginger root yourself is easy. This article shows you how to.
Growing organic ginger at home
Your entire initial investment in growing ginger is an organic ginger root. Use an organically grown tuber to avoid starting your ginger plantation with an inferior product of dubious origin. Colloquially one speaks of a root, but strictly speaking it is a rhizome.
With organic ginger you can be sure that the magic tuber is also full of essential oils that are responsible for the whole range of healing effects of ginger, but free of harmful pesticides.
Increasing the ginger itself and integrating it more often into the diet is particularly worthwhile for health reasons. It is particularly effective against digestive problems and numerous infections, helps with travel sickness and other nausea, has an analgesic effect, prevents colds and… is even a natural aphrodisiac, to name but a few of the numerous effects.
Ginger tubers have eyes similar to potatoes. With proper care, a new ginger plant can grow from each of these vegetation points.
Growing ginger in your home
This is how you start growing ginger:
- Place the root tuber in lukewarm water overnight as a germination aid.
Fill two thirds of a flowerpot with soil with a high nutrient content. A preferably large, flat bowl is best, because the roots spread sideways rather than into the depth.
- Put the ginger root in the soil. Cover with about two centimetres of soil or even better humus and press down lightly.
- Moisten carefully with room warm water, preferably with a spray bottle.
- Cover the tropical plant with food foil to ensure sufficient humidity. However, do not suffocate, but leave a small opening for a certain amount of air exchange. A small construction of twigs or sticks provides the plant with a certain space with high humidity.
- Place in a bright, warm and draught-free place without direct sunlight. Moisten daily with the spray bottle. Not too much, however, so that the earth is not wet and begins to mold or to modern.
- Occasionally open or remove the film for a few minutes to ensure air exchange. This creates the best conditions for the ginger to sprout and to reach its first green tips.
Of course, in cold Central Europe you can’t expect your ginger plant to shoot up in no time, as it does in the tropics. But at the beginning of spring, when the sun gets stronger and provides more brightness again, is the best time to start growing ginger planting in your garden.
When the first shoot appears after a few weeks, it is time to repot the plant and place it in the sunniest place you can find in your home. Take care, however, to accustom the plant slowly and gradually to the direct sun so that the change of location does not overwhelm it.
As the above-ground part of the plant develops, the underground tuber gains strength and mass. After about eight to ten months of patience, the time has come. You can harvest your first home-grown regional ginger tubers! You can tell that the time of harvest has been reached when the leaves start to turn yellow.
Harvesting home grown ginger
Either you harvest the whole root or you cut off a large piece of the root and give the rest the chance of a new life next spring. During this vegetation break, the plant should be wintered in a dark, about ten degrees cool room without watering. A too warm location is less suitable because the pot and the remaining plant would dry out unnecessarily.
What you can use the healing ginger for, you will learn in this article! Did you know that you can use the same trick to grow turmeric?
Have you ever tried growing unusual plants yourself? Why don’t you tell us about your horticultural successes in your comments?