Growing ginger in a pot is a satisfying project. Ginger does really well in containers and rarely has problems, as long as it has the right conditions to thrive in. The most common complaint gardeners have about ginger is that they don't have enough to harvest for cooking with this tasty rhizome (technically, it's not a root). Although easier than growing vegetables in pots, growing ginger for harvesting does require a little know-how.
San Diego based Kevin Epiritu, creator of Epic Gardening, shares his top tips for successfully growing ginger in pots to get a higher yield.
1. Choose the rhizome with the most shoots
If you want a lot of ginger, you need a bigger ginger rhizome to begin with, it's that simple. Kevin demonstrates choosing a ginger piece for planting in the supermarket. He chooses one that has lots of 'eyes' – the pointy new shoots the ginger is sprouting. This rhizome will grow larger quicker, so you'll be able to use more of it for your cooking.
2. A wide, shallow pot is better than a tall, narrow one
This is probably Kevin's most important tip for growing ginger in a pot. As he explains, the ginger stalks you see above soil level 'creep in one direction'. Essentially, they 'grow horizontally' and then bend upwards because 'the rhizome expands horizontally'. So, 'it makes more sense to grow ginger in a wide, shallow pot rather than a narrow deep pot.' We have to admit we didn't know this one.
Get more container gardening ideas for all sorts of plants in our guide.
3. Give ginger plenty of humidity and heat
Kevin advises to think about ginger's native environment. 'It came from South East Asia, that's a tropical climate.' This should inform where you grow your ginger and when you put it outside. If you live in an area with true frosts in winter, keep it indoors until all risk of frost has passed. 'Heat, humidity and water' is what ginger needs, so you may wish to keep it indoors completely until the summer.
Alternatively, a greenhouse can a great place to grow ginger. Browse our greenhouse ideas for inspiration.
Anna's background is in academic research – she is the author of London Writing of the 1930s, published by Edinburgh University Press. She is a keen urban gardener and has an impressive collection of house plants.
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