Edible Gardening

How to Grow Edibles Indoors This Winter

By Ellen Wells


Try Something Different

There are other veggies that suit themselves to growing indoors. Although they are not typically found growing in an outdoor garden, they can be fun to add to your indoor garden (and tasty, too).

Mushrooms. There are a few easy-to-use kits on the market that allow you to grow a crop of mushrooms using composted materials such as coffee grounds. I’m currently using a ‘Back to The Roots’ mushroom kit that produces two crops of oyster mushrooms. The composted material is seeded with mushroom spores. With a little spritzing and some indirect light, it will produce a harvest in about 12 days.

Sprouts. With a shallow dish, some paper towel or growing mat, and a dark closet, you can grow some tasty sprouts to use in sandwiches or salads in less than seven days. Microgreens are similar but are grown in soil and harvested by snipping a bit after about two weeks. Both versions are packed with nutrients. Popular types are mung bean, broccoli and alfalfa. Look online to find more varieties and sources.

Re-growing from Scraps. This may be the technique that gets your kids involved in indoor growing. It’s possible to regrow a head of leaf lettuce, for instance, by placing the core end of the lettuce plant in a shallow dish of water and under a light. Once roots start to grow, replant into some potting mix. Try this with celery, pineapple, garlic, onions, celery and radishes.

Cat Grass. Indoor edibles don’t have to be only for you! Order some “cat grass” or, if you planted a winter rye cover crop in your outdoor garden, use some of that seed. It’ll be a quick-growing treat for your kitty.

 

There’s clearly no need to put-off vegetable gardening through the dark and cold months ahead. While you may need to downsize the ‘plot’ and to adjust your harvesting expectations, there’s still plenty of food that can come from an indoor vegetable garden. The daily anticipation of how the crops are progressing is just as exciting as growing outdoors — and without the muddy shoes.

 

Happy New Year!

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