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05-21 Enrichment for Humans: Kitchen Scraps Garden

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Enrichment for Humans: Kitchen Scraps Garden

The next time you are going to throw away green onions, sprouted garlic, or the end of a head of lettuce, wait! Many vegetable scraps will grow into new vegetables if you give them the chance. In this activity, we’ll learn how to grow our own small kitchen garden from vegetable scraps.

Growing new food from scraps is easier than you’d think!


  • Vegetable scraps like those listed below:
    • green onions or leeks
    • celery bottom
    • Romaine lettuce bottom
  • Shallow containers
  • Water, sunlight, and patience!


  1. Gather veggie scraps like those listed above next time your family goes grocery shopping or makes a meal together. When shopping, look for lettuces and celery that still has the bottom root on.
  2. For celery, lettuce, and onions, simply cut off the very bottom of the root bulb and place in a shallow container of water. The bulb should not be fully submerged, but the bottom should remain underwater. Place in a sunny spot and refresh the water often.
  3. After a week or so, you should see new leaves growing up out of your root bulbs. If you don’t, just compost your bulbs and try again! Once the new growths turn into full celery plants or lettuce heads, you can eat them!
  4. Other scraps like sprouted garlic, beets, and carrot tops will work too. You can even place these directly into the soil, water them, and keep them in a sunny spot. However, these plants will not regrow the root, only the tasty greens on top. These are great for salads, soups, or pesto!