Icon - Arrow LeftAn icon we use to indicate a rightwards action. Icon - Arrow RightAn icon we use to indicate a leftwards action. Icon - External LinkAn icon we use to indicate a button link is external. Icon - MessageThe icon we use to represent an email action. Icon - Down ChevronUsed to indicate a dropdown. Icon - CloseUsed to indicate a close action. Icon - Dropdown ArrowUsed to indicate a dropdown. Icon - Location PinUsed to showcase a location on a map. Icon - Zoom OutUsed to indicate a zoom out action on a map. Icon - Zoom InUsed to indicate a zoom in action on a map. Icon - SearchUsed to indicate a search action. Icon - EmailUsed to indicate an emai action. Icon - FacebookFacebooks brand mark for use in social sharing icons. flipboard Icon - InstagramInstagrams brand mark for use in social sharing icons. Icon - PinterestPinterests brand mark for use in social sharing icons. Icon - TwitterTwitters brand mark for use in social sharing icons. Icon - Check MarkA check mark for checkbox buttons.
You are reading

DIY: Grow an Indoor Compost Garden


DIY: Grow an Indoor Compost Garden

February 25, 2016

Stews certainly help to take the chill out of winter. That’s why we make a lot of these warm and hardy meals in our house. But it seems a shame to consign all the lovely leftover vegetable scraps–the roots, the bulbs, the carrot tops–to the compost bin.

That’s why, after reading an article about growing a compost garden in the Illinois News Gazette, the kids and I decided to grow a garden from the leftover roots from fresh vegetables from our latest stew. Granted, we won’t be harvesting the, er, “fruits of our labor” this summer, but it was still fun to cheat winter by watching our garden grow.

Photography by Justine Hand.

Compost Garden vegetables-DIY_Gardenista_1

Above: Root vegetables such as the carrots, potatoes, and beets above lend themselves quite well to compost gardening, as do beans and bulbs like onions and garlic. You can also try citrus seeds that have been soaked in water or even pineapple (though neither of these worked for us).

Compost Garden, cutting tops of veggies -DIY_Gardenista_2

Above: For leafy vegetables like carrots and beets, select specimens with the tops intact. Then solicit your little helpers to cut off all but 2 or 3 inches of stem.

Compost Garden gravel bed, Gardenista-3jpg

Above: Prepare a bed of gravel, small stones and/or soil in a shallow dish or pie plate. We chose an antique cash drawer from Oh Albatross, which we lined with plastic. You can find a similar vintage divided drawer on Etsy.

planting the compost garden-733x488

Above: For carrots and beets, push them into the gravel cut side down and add water to the top layer of rocks. Keep well watered. Plant beans a couple centimeters deep in soil and keep moist. As a bulb, garlic takes well when placed shoulder-deep in either soil or gravel.

Next, place your compost garden in a sunny spot and wait.

Compost Garden potato-733x1100

Above: Remember this technique with avocado pits? It works with potatoes too.

Compost Garden, sprouting carrots-733x489

Above: After a couple of weeks, our carrot tops are coming along nicely.

compost garden beans-733x489

Above: Our beans began to sprout too.

Compsot Garden garlic-733x489

Above: Garlic greens can actually be harvested to add a bit of flavor to future soups and stews.

Compost Garden, sprouting beets-733x1099

Above: Here come the beets.

Compost Garden 2-733x489Above: Here is our whole garden after about three weeks. We’re going to keep it going.

Compost Garden and kids-733x1100

Above: As the kids admire their new garden, I’m thinking that I’ve secured two recruits to help with the real thing this summer.

N.B.: If we’re still looking for another way to cheat winter with a little indoor cultivation, next month I think we’ll try this Edible Garden on Wheels.

(Visited 354 times, 1 visits today)
You need to login or register to view and manage your bookmarks.

Have a Question or Comment About This Post?

Join the conversation