Thursday, August 26, 2010

Fresh Ginger!

My ginger experiment is coming along very nicely. I had wanted to find young ginger, but the kind in the stores is usually pretty mature (read: strong). Young ginger has a milder flavor. What to do? I decided to try growing ginger myself. It seems to like this big pot on my back deck. The stems have gotten so tall they're bending over. The leaves have a nice gingery fragrance when you brush against them.

Turns out growing ginger is very easy. Just take a fresh root, lay it on some dirt, and that's it! Doesn't even need a lot of sun, especially in the early stages. Just warmth and moisture. Since ginger comes from tropical regions, it's loving this 100-degree weather we've been having.

It's not ready to harvest yet. It takes well over 200 days to be ready. Here you can see the new growth coming out of the planted "root." (The edible part isn't really the root, even though people call it "ginger root." It's actually the rhizome.)

The bulbous part between the stem and the original "root" is the rhizome (I think). We'll see how it looks after 200 days. I can't remember the date I first did the planting, so don't ask how long it's been.

Know what else likes the heat and humidity? All those little bitty mushrooms growing around the ginger. You can see their creamy brownish caps all over the pot. They'll grow a bit then die...they don't hurt anything. The grandkids like pulling them out.

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