Feb 01

How to Grow -Ginger

This is a first.
Not only because we have never grown ginger before, but also we don't normally post about anything we haven't actually done.

Here's the thing, it can take nigh on a year before you will see the results of this attempt, so if you want to join in on the fun, go get yourself a root.

how to grow ginger

Step #1

As always, there is much conflicting information on the internet. No surprise, ginger probably grows somewhat differently in various places.

So here's the basics:
1. You can use a ginger root from the market.

2. Start your ginger by placing it in some potting soil. Don't bury it like a potato, just press it into the soil. You can plant the whole root, or break off side shoots. The roots grow from open/cut sides, so the smaller pieces may be better. Just as a test, we did both.

3. Ginger has tiny little nodules on it, they look like little spikes. This is where the green growth will come from. Don't worry if you can't see them, they are there. If you look close you can just see this nodule is turning white as it begins to sprout.

how to grow ginger

nodule sprouting

4. Continue to mist the ginger to keep it moist. Place in a warm area. After about a week the nodules will begin to sprout and the roots to grow. The next picture shows tiny hair-like roots coming out.

how to grow ginger

tiny roots

5. When the weather is continually above 50F, or after the last spring frost, you can bring the ginger outside. At this point it can be transplanted into the ground or remain in the pot. Ginger takes anywhere from 230-300 days to grow. That's quite a difference, but it definitely does not like frost. Again to experiment, we will plant some in the ground and leave the rest in the container.

6. Ginger can take some shade, so almost any location is suitable. We have not read anything about it being invasive, but we're going to keep it out of the main garden just to be safe.

7. Before the frost, bring the ginger back indoors. Presumably, the longer it has to grow, the bigger the roots will become. Bigger isn't always better, the roots can get tough.

Have you ever grown ginger? Care to give it a go?

Botanical name: Zingiber officinale
Yield: One root will produce multiple roots.
Plant height: About 4 ft.
Harvest: When the leaves die back.
Storage: Dehydrate, freeze or pickle.

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    • Avatar of gj
    • cheryl sigler on February 1, 2013 at 11:40 am

    lol you had to go there /jk –now you got me wanting to join in –time to play and buy some ginger lol //question i live in 5 b zone —can i start indoors or wait till spring /thnks

    • Avatar of gj
    • gj on February 1, 2013 at 2:38 pm

    Haha- sorry Cheryl! Yes, start it indoors now. We are in Zone 6, recently upgraded from 5- so about the same weather as you have.

    • Avatar of gj
    • Elaine on February 1, 2013 at 9:13 pm

    ‘Tried ginger many years ago. It was easy to grow and took about eleven months. I probably used garden soil….but this time will use a rich mix of compost and worm castings….unless someone has a better suggestion. Also , wouldn’t it be helpful if we mentioned our zone when relevant? I’ll try to remember. Love Y’all. Zone 6

    • Avatar of gj
    • gj on February 2, 2013 at 8:36 am

    Thanks Elaine, I think the worm castings is a great idea! I have only used them once on a small scale, but intend to start another worm ‘farm’ this year.

    You’re right about the Zone as well, I thought it was on the About Me page, it wasn’t so I’m adding it. Hope we all have a great growing season!

    • Avatar of gj
    • Beth on February 2, 2013 at 9:53 am

    I have done this. It makes a really neat plant much like daffodil leaves actually. I kept mine going quite a while. Don’t remember if I ate the new tuber or not now. Did it in the house. Love the zone idea….I’m a 3/4.

    • Avatar of gj
    • gj on February 3, 2013 at 8:33 am

    Oh that’s encouraging Beth, thanks for posting. We’re still anxiously awaiting that first bud.

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    • Kim Mulder on February 3, 2013 at 8:53 pm

    Love this. I will be adding ginger this year, starting it indoors this coming week! Thank you!

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    • gj on February 4, 2013 at 6:37 am

    That’s wonderful Kim, good luck with it!

    • Avatar of gj
    • Sarah on April 14, 2013 at 11:44 am

    I grew it last year. Doing it again this year. I got enough from my harvest to make candied ginger for Christmas gifts. I mainly did it as a test run last year. I think my yield will be better this year. Here are a few website that might also be helpful…http://www.veggiegardeningtips.com/growing-baby-ginger-as-a-backyard-garden-vegetable-crop/

    You can order seed ginger from the East Branch Ginger website as well as get detailed info on growing it…http://sfc.smallfarmcentral.com/dynamic_content/uploadfiles/2645/Insert.Ginger.2012.doc

    • Avatar of gj
    • Sarah on April 14, 2013 at 11:46 am

    Oh, and I live in zone six by the way.

    • Avatar of gj
    • gj on April 14, 2013 at 12:03 pm

    Thanks so much Sarah, great info!

    • Avatar of gj
    • Kim on May 10, 2013 at 2:08 pm

    Just stopping in to let you kn0w that I planted the ginger the day of my last post. I am doing the same, keeping some indoors and trying the other in the garden. Looking forward to seeing what happens! Kim – Zone 4

    • Avatar of gj
    • gj on May 10, 2013 at 2:35 pm

    Me too! So far I have learned that the larger ‘chunk’ did better than the smaller pieces. Separating the 4 stems I have growing might prove tough, but I’m going to give it a go. Good luck!

    • Avatar of gj
    • Kim H. on November 17, 2013 at 1:35 pm

    I have grown ginger for years here in Va. (Hampton Roads Area). If you live in an area that has crazy weather like us, mine is in the ground, reproduces like crazy and I never added anything to the soil. It will die off at first frost but has always survived our winters. And it smells divine when it blooms in late Sept. I planted it for the flowers and smell, now I’m off to get recipes, didn’t think about cooking with it.

    • Avatar of gj
    • gj on November 17, 2013 at 2:16 pm

    Oh thanks for that Kim! I will give it a go planting some in the ground next spring to see what happens- and I didn’t know it gets flowers. Thanks!

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