Last week a friend of mine shared with me some very cool ideas about regrowing vegetable scraps, and after doing a little bit of research, I found out how simple it is to regrow lettuce stumps, onion roots, and even carrots. Not only is it very cost effective to reuse your scraps instead of throwing them away, but it is so easy! Making me wonder why I have never tried doing this before..
What to do with your lettuce stumps and onion roots
Onions: Cut the onion scapes about 2-3 inches above the root bulb–leaving a few centimeters of green scallion. The green leaf of the onion contains more chlorophyll which promotes faster growth compared to cutting below the green. Suspend the roots in a jar of water; water should be at a level just above the root bulbs. You can place several scapes in one jar, and be sure that they have sunlight exposure during the day. Change the water daily, and if possible, use well water seeing that it tends to have more minerals, yet tap water should do fine.
I’ve tried this at home, and after a week the onions have already significantly grown back…
I’ve used two pens and a couple rubber bands in order to hold the scapes upright, which has worked very well. You can keep your onions growing in water like this for weeks and they should continue growing. You can also grow them in moistened potting soil from the start, watering them daily with access to sunlight.
Lettuce: Very simple method as well…Cut the lettuce leaves about one inch from the bottom stump (don’t worry if there is no root formation), and place in a bowl with a half-inch of water. Change the water daily and make sure it has access to sunlight. Lettuce should begin to grow roots and small leaves after about a week, at which point you can transplant it into potting soil. I haven’t tried this yet, but from what I have read, it is advisable to transplant the lettuce into soil instead of leaving it in water, seeing that the plant will begin to suffer without essential nutrients. If transplanted, water the lettuce daily.
Regrow Kitchen Scraps: Romaine
Regrowing Spring Onions at Home
Lettuce photo from Housing a Forest