Harvest Monday, February 29, 2016 – Container Ginger + Seeds Starting

Few years ago I experimented with growing ginger using ginger rhizome I purchased from the health food store. It grew but the yield was poor, decided it was not possible to grow ginger in the Hudson Valley due to our short growing season so gave up.

Recently I received a gift of freshly dug ginger rhizome with roots attached so decided to give it another try.

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Ginger rhizome with roots attached

I planted the entire piece of rhizome with the roots attached, in a 12 x 12 x 9½ container and watered lightly. Keeping it indoor until the weather is warm enough to move outdoor.

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Ginger planted in container, I was told to leave a bit of the tip exposed.

The plan is to grow the ginger in the container and break off pieces of the rhizome as needed for cooking. In the fall when the leaves turn brown and the plant goes dormant bring the container with the ginger indoor, store in the basement (making sure the soil stays moist) and in the spring it will regrow. Well, that’s what I am hoping will happen. Planning (or I should say will try) to keep records of its progress. Shall keep you posted.

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Trying a few new items in the garden this year one of which is celery.

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Golden Pascal Celery

The instruction on the package says to soak the seeds for 24 hours. But the seeds are very tiny (the size of a pin head as illustrated in above photo) I thought it would be very difficult to handle the soaked seeds so decided to plant the unsoaked seeds and soak the sowed cell pack for 24 hours then drain. Will this work? I hope so if not I just have to start over.

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Also started lettuce, broccoli, kohlrabi, collard, bok choy and napa cabbage. I am starting these much earlier than I did previous years and only a few of each for the purpose of experiment to see which crop does well and which does not and whether it is worth the effort.

These seedlings will be transferred into window boxes or containers and because of their portability, depending on weather conditions, I can move them in and out of the garage if needed. I know you are thinking: “Norma lacks a life.”

I will start another batch of seeds later for transplanting into the garden.

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New this year:
Johnny’s Hybrid Pac Choi, win-win choi F1, 52 days
Johnny’s Hybrid Chinese Cabbage, minuet F1, 48 days
Pinetree Hybrid Broccoli, gypsy F1, 57 days

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Containers below are leeks, left and spinach, right.

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Left: King Richard Leeks. Right: Kookaburra Spinach

The leeks are for transplanting into the garden, the spinach may be transplanted into the garden or window boxes.

The Kookaburra spinach is new for me this year, it is a variety that is highly resistant to downy mildew. The seeds were gift from Mary N who is planting this variety for the first time this year and wanted me to try it also, thanks Mary.

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Starting my spring carrots indoors and hopefully my garden will dry out when the seedlings are ready.


Am going to make a real effort to record the progress so I can answer Mary N’s question: “How long were the carrots growing under lights to reach the bigger size?” (comment she left on my post of 2/22/15).

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Did you notice that the pH is listed on the back of Johnny’s vegetables seed package under CULTURE?

If you do not order from Johnny’s but would like to know the pH requirements for a certain vegetable go to their web site and type in the name of the vegetable. The pH for most but not all is listed.

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Copyright © by Norma Chang. All Rights Reserved. Do not use/repost any photos and/or articles without permission.

Do visit Dave at Our Happy Acres for more Harvest Mondays

About Norma Chang

I am the author/publisher of 2 user-friendly Chinese cookbooks: "My Students' Favorite Chinese Recipes (updated edition)" and "Wokking Your Way to Low Fat Cooking" A gardener who enjoys cooking and eating and loves to think outside the box A garden volunteer at Locust Grove Heritage Vegetable Garden Conduct hands-on cooking workshops for teenagers Conduct cultural programs for children and family Conduct healthy cooking classes for adults
This entry was posted in Container gardening, Gardening, Growing ginger, Harvest Monday, Herbs, Husdon Valley, New York, Uncategorized, Vegetables and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

29 Responses to Harvest Monday, February 29, 2016 – Container Ginger + Seeds Starting

  1. Eva Taylor says:

    I am very happy and excited to report that Oscar (my little Meyer lemon tree) has been diligently growing two Meyer lemons over the winter. I bought a grow lamp for him because our winter has been so depressingly dreary. The lemons are now more than 1.25″ long! I was told to water him once a week and it seems to be working, the leaves are nice and green and non have fallen. I can’t wait for the blooms to begin, they smell so lovely.

  2. I was thinking about trying to grow ginger (again) in containers and you have inspired me to give it a try. I can use the greenhouse to extend the season then bring it indoors like you plan to do. I will have to plant ginger from the store, so I will see how long it takes to root. I am thinking some bottom heat on the pot might help get it going. I will be looking forward to seeing how yours does!

    I have found Johnny’s has a wealth of information on their seeds packets and in their catalog, which I keep close by for reference throughout the growing season.

  3. Angie@Angie's Recipes says:

    I need to start seeds too…

  4. Michelle says:

    I guess I don’t have a life either, I spend weeks schlepping my solanum seedlings inside and outside through the spring. 🙂 I sow my celery seeds without soaking, but I do lay a piece of plastic wrap over the surface of the soil to keep it from drying out. Celery seeds take a long time to germinate and a long time to get to transplantable size – always a test of my patience. I really do need to experiment with growing ginger too, I’m interested to see how your effort work out.

  5. ChgoJohn says:

    Think you don’t have a life? Not at all. I was wondering just how green your thumb is. Every season you experiment, as well as introduce new vegetables to your garden. I find it all very interesting, Norma. 🙂

  6. Margaret says:

    You certainly have a head start on the season! I grew ginger many, many years ago as well but can’t really recall how well it did – obviously not phenomenal as I stopped growing it! I’ll be keeping an eye on your progress as ginger is a favourite and it would be lovely to have some that is homegrown.

  7. I am looking forward to hearing how your ginger fares, Norma. How great it would be to get a fresh piece whenever you need it! And I am so impressed with the carrot transplants in your last post– totally contrary to what I would have thought! I guess that just shows how important your experiments are.

  8. I would also like to try to grow ginger. There is a farm near here that grows and sells ginger roots, so it must be possible to grow it here. It seems that they sell out quickly though, so I might have missed the chance to get some for this year. I hope yours does well. It looks like you will definitely be ready for spring when it arrives.

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello Julie,
      With your long growing season I am sure you can grow ginger successfully. My cousin lives in central Florida and leaves her ginger in the ground year round, may be it will work for you too.

  9. Where we live in Australia is the largest ginger growing area in the southern hemisphere. It grows like weeds everywhere. Some of them have the most beautiful flowers. I tossed out a piece in a pot one day and within weeks had leaves.

    My father once wet layers of paper towel and sprinkled the seeds on top and then put one sheet on top and wet that for 24 hours and had success.

  10. Sophie33 says:

    You are already sowing many new seeds. Good for you. Here it is still too wet. I have transplanted 5 tomato seedlings & they are growing bigger & bigger. My red chili seedling is popping out of the ground indoors but my 4 eggplant seedlings haven’t popped up yet. Sigh!
    I didn’t know that you could sow carrots & then transplanted them?

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello Sopjie,
      My garden is still too wet and cold these seed starts are for containers and window boxes. I didn’t know either until 2+ years ago when I came across carrots seedlings at a nursery and decided to give it try.

  11. You are always such an inspiration Norma!
    Have a beautiful weekend.
    🙂 Mandy xo

  12. Pingback: Harvest Monday, March 7, 2016 – Container Garlic Experiment + More Seed Starting + Garden Tips | Garden to Wok

  13. I heard that it was relatively simple to grow ginger… now I must try this, following your pointers Norma. Thank you for sharing.

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello Liz,
      Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to leave a comment. Yes, ginger is easy to grow if one lives in the tropic but in New York the growing season is way too short reason I am growing in container so that I can bring it indoor to overwinter, hope it works.

  14. Pingback: Harvest Monday, August 22, 2016 – Container Ginger Update + More Container Harvest | Garden to Wok

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