Everyone is looking for ways to make their food go further amid the coronavirus crisis - after all, fewer trips to the supermarkets means limited exposure to the virus. As a result, many people have been getting green-fingered and growing their own fruit and vegetable gardens at home, but did you know that you can grow a practically endless supply of salad using just water?
With the weather warming up, many of us are looking forward to dining on lighter meals, particularly delicious salads. But we all know that feeling of urgency when you realise there is a very short window of time in which you can make use of the fresh, perishable items before they start rotting in your salad drawer. In partnership with Lidl, Royal Horticultural Society ambassador Jamie Butterworth has shared his top tips on how to regrow salad vegetables at home so you can limit your food waste.
What you'll need:
Indoor plant pots, £15.99, Amazon
Jamie revealed lettuce is very easy to grow indoors and doesn't even require any compost. He explained the first step is to cut the lettuce leaves about 1-2 inches from the bottom. "Make sure you don’t cut the lettuce in half or remove the centre. Pop the stem in a bowl – making sure it can stand up – and add an inch of water. Change the water every other today to keep it fresh and don’t let it dry out. Within less than a week, you’ll see new leaves start to poke through the centre," he said.
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He continued by revealing that one spring onion bulb can product three to four crops of leaves - so it's definitely worth trying this one at home if you're a fan of the salad staple. Speaking of the growing process, Jamie said: “Simply cut the leaves from the bulb, just above where it changes colour from white to green but make sure you leave the roots attached. Pop them root down in a small jar of water, making sure that the stem isn’t below the water level and you’ll see new leaves start to appear in just a few days!”
Even the easiest of recipes often expect you to have a cupboard stocked full of herbs such as basil and coriander in order to flavour the dish. So why not grow your own? If you don't have many pots to spare then you can even make use of toilet roll tubes - so there's no excuse not to give it a go! “When you buy a pot of herbs, you’re not just buying one plant, it’s made up of lots of individual plants," Jamie said. "Remove from the pot, gently pull the clump of plants apart into 4 or 6 smaller plants then snip off any that look floppy. Pop in your pot of compost and then ‘pinch out’ the tips of the plants – find the first two big leaves on the stem and snip them off. Pop on the windowsill and watch them grow.”
Now all you need is some fresh tomatoes - which can be grown in containers and require minimal maintenance - avocado, chicken and other toppings of your choice, and you've got yourself a healthy and fresh summer meal. Excuse us while we grab our gardening gloves...
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