You’ve used what you need from your herbs and veggies – don’t throw out the remnants! We show you the easiest herbs and vegetables to regrow right on your kitchen windowsill, with no pots or soil.
Styling by Nomvuselelo Mncube
Photograph by Dylan Swart
Simply use what you need of your bunch of leeks, keeping the ends with the roots. Put the roots in a little water in a place with plenty of light. Change the water every 1 – 2 days. Within a few days, you will notice fresh, green shoots sprouting – simply chop off what you need, as they will continue
to grow endlessly.
When next you use a full head of butter-, cos- or baby gem lettuce or a living lettuce, chop off the leaves, keeping the heart or roots intact. Place the heart or roots in a little water in a bowl or jar and position it in a sunny spot in your kitchen. Change the water every 2 – 3 days and you’ll have fresh lettuce sprouting from the centre of the heart in no time! You’ll have to let it grow for a while before you get enough leaves to harvest and then start the process over again. Trim off the outer leaves of your starter heart when they turn brown, but the inside shoots will
be fresh and delicious.
Once you have used what you need of your lemongrass, place the ends with the hard roots in a little water in a space that gets plenty of sunlight. Change the water every 1 – 2 days. As fresh, green shoots begin to sprout, chop off only what you need. They will continue to grow.
If you’ve used what you need from your punnet of basil and there are a few stalks remaining, these are easy to propagate for transplanting later. Simply place a 10cm or longer stem of basil in a jar with some water in it. Place the jar in a sun-lit spot and remember to change the water every 2 – 3 days. Once the roots develop to 5cm or longer (this takes 2 – 4 weeks), transplant into soil in a pot or your garden.
5. Spring onions
Don’t throw those old spring-onion bottoms in the bin – you can keep an endless supply of them without ever having to buy more! Use what you need of your spring onions, keeping the ends with the roots. Place these in a little water in an area with plenty of light. Change the water every 1 – 2 days. Once fresh, green shoots sprout, simply snip off what you need and leave the rest to keep growing.