Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Growing Ginger in a Pot

While we're on the subject of rhizomes, I decided to try growing ginger this year, which is also considered the rhizome of the plant 'Zingiber officinale'.  They say it can take up to a year for the plant to produce ginger of a size worth harvesting.  And since we don't live in a subtropical climate, my ginger plant will be grown in a large pot and spend most of its time in the green room.  While I was at the grocery store the other day, I tried to choose pieces that looked the most fresh and plump (avoiding the shriveled ones) and had bumpy bits or eyes that were of a lighter shade of yellow.  Apparently, that's where the plant will send up it's shoots.

To be honest, I didn't do too much research on the subject of growing ginger. I just broke the large root into three smaller sections, let the severed ends dry up a bit and then planted them in a large pot filled with some good quality growing mix.   I covered them with about an inch or two of the mix, watered them well and placed the pot in a warm location.

I have no idea how long it will take for them to sprout.  At this point, I'm gonna just cross my fingers and hope for the best.  If you have any advice on growing ginger successfully in a pot, please share!


  1. You should talk to Mac at High Desert Garden, she grows ginger in pots. Which reminds me, I want to try it too this year!

  2. Thomas I did this same thing two years ago. The ginger rooted within just a few weeks and I had a small plant all summer. It died back in the winter (because I didn't bring it in) I was surprised to see it come back the second year. It died back again this winter and we had more frost days this year so I'm not sure that it made it. I guess I should dig it up and see whats going on in the pot. I'm not hopeful but you never know :-) Good luck with yours.

  3. I have never tried growing ginger before but I have always been so tempted to. I didn't know you could grow supermarket ginger. I grow horseradish and it's similar in growing methods. Although I didn't bring my horseradish in the house. I look forward to reading about your ginger progress.

  4. I've grown ginger in pots before and am again this year. The things I've found are: it takes longer than you'd think to sprout. I plant mine around September (in the Southern Hemisphere) and it sometimes takes until December for it to appear - dependant on the weather. It likes hot steamy conditions, lots of food, water and shade. I am at the very edge of where it can be successfully grown so I haven't had huge crops but I've had fun trying.

    1. Liz - good to know! Thanks. I guess I won't be holding my breathe waiting for it to sprout.

  5. This is a great idea Thomas! I have been wanting to do this for awhile now. Let us know how it works out!

  6. I have grown ginger in a pot (on the prairies of Canada) and have had it sprout, grow, and become harvest-able in less than a year. It was fun to grow and I am planing on putting up more in a pot this year. Have patience and before you know it you will have ginger growing!!

    I kept my indoors in the warmest brightest spot I could find.

  7. On Christmas, my aunt gave me a hunk of ginger that she had sprouted. She places it in a plastic bag (not sealed) in a drawer, and she said to plant it when those buds/sprouts begin to elongate and turn green, which I think occurred about a month or so later. I barely buried the rhizome in potting soil, and I now have two 12" tall green shoots with leaves beginning to unfurl. I'll move the pot to the patio once the weather warms up for good. I can't wait to see what it does this summer!

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  9. We're propagating ginger in my horticulture class and our TA told us that you should cut each piece of the rhizome so that it has one or two nodes (which look like eyes on a potato).
    Also, while researching, my lab group found that it reaches maturity in about 10 months, which is longer than we expected. It's also dormant in the winter months. So once the plant is fully established, when it goes dormant allow the soil dry out. That way it'll come back in the spring.