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garden projects
Published June 28, 2022 by Nicole Burke

How to Regrow Green Onions from the Store

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green onions
regrow
Garden projects
how to regrow green onions plant

Ready to Regrow Some Green Onions?

What this question's really asking is, are you ready to experience a little garden magic? Because regrowing fresh and delicious food from kitchen scraps is nothing short of magic.

I can't promise that you'll never have to buy green onions from the grocery store again. You will, however, get more fresh green onion stems to eat (hey, that's more bang for your buck, right?). Whatever the results, this is a fun indoor gardening project that'll teach you a bit more about plants and how they grow.

Like, for instance, how incredibly easy green onions are to grow in the garden.

Follow these super simple steps to regrow green onions that you bought from the grocery store.

HERE'S WHAT YOU'LL NEED:

  • one bunch of organic green onions with roots still attached
  • a tall glass filled with one inch of room-temperature water (or a small clay pot filled with organic compost)
  • a clean pair of pruners or scissors
  • a dibber or butter knife
green onions picture

Steps to make garden magic happen

Directions to Regrow Green Onions

Follow these simple steps to turn your kitchen scraps into free green onion plants.

STEP ONE

Make sure your bunch of green onions still has all the roots attached. Look at one green onion closely. The white part is the very first plant part you'd see above the soil line as green onions are growing. Notice how the color gradually darkens as you move toward the tip of the tall leaves. It's not until the section where the leaves begin to turn green that the growth happens. Leaves branch out from the center piece above the base where white becomes green.

Trim each green onion an inch or two above this center piece. Keep the top portion of the chopped green onion to eat and enjoy in the kitchen.

green onions chopped

STEP TWO

You have two options for step two—it's a green onions choose your own adventure!

The first option is to put the bottom portion of your cut green onions in a glass of water. The glass should be tall enough that the sides can support the green onion leaves and prevent them from falling over as they grow back in. You don't want the leaves staying in the water (soggy green onions are real stinky... trust me!) The water level should be just high enough to cover the roots of the plant.

The second option is to put the green onions straight into some soil—either your garden bed if your weather is optimal or a little pot filled with compost. Use a dibber or the tip of a butter knife to make a hole wider than the roots of your green onion and as deep as the white section. The roots will be fragile, so you want to slide them into their new hole without damaging them. Bury your green onion plant so that the white part is entirely covered, and then push soil around the base.

Give your freshly planted green onion some water. If you're growing in a pot, keep it in filtered light (in other words, not a south-facing window). The benefit of this method is that your growing green onions can get nutrients from the soil. With the water method, the plants will eventually lose their flavor and their nutritional value when they run out of nutrients and can't pull more from the water. Plants grown in soil will be so healthy and fresh!

green onions cut with water to regrow in

STEP THREE

Get ready for some magic!

Within a day or two, you'll notice the tip of the green onion will start to grow upward.

If you're growing in water, change out this water every two to three days.

If you're growing in soil, you'll need to watch your plants closely to make sure the soil doesn't dry out.

green onions growing

STEP FOUR

If you're growing in water, give your plants one to two weeks to regrow. Then, cut the new growth and start over with fresh bottoms. (Like I said, the old ones will be in need of fresh nutrients at this point.)

If you're growing in soil, continue to harvest from your new green onion plants.

You'll find that the size of mature green onion plants makes them ideal for container growing. You don't even need a very large pot, and you can keep this container on a porch or patio or inside on a windowsill.

how do green onions grow

What this garden magic teaches us

Lessons You'll Learn About How Green Onions Grow

With this method, you can have green onions growing forever! Along the way, you'll learn three reasons green onions are basically your garden BFFs.

Reason one: green onions are low maintenance

Every friend group has that one person who's super picky, right? They don't like certain kinds of food, and they don't like certain places, and they make it hard to solidify plans. I prefer friends who are easy going. They don't care where we go because they know we're going to have a good time no matter what.

Green onions are this type of friend. They're not super picky about anything. The temperature outside doesn't have to be just right. It can get cold, it can even frost and snow—green onions are going to be fine. It can be scorching hot outside, and again, green onions are going to be a-okay as long as you give them some water. If they do get a little too dry, if they receive a little too much rain, they'll hang in there.

reason two: green onions deter pests

We all need a BFF who will fight off any bullies for us, who will take up for us if someone tries to harm us. That's what green onions do for our gardens.

If you're gardening organically outdoors, you will eventually have pests in your space. The great thing about green onions is they release a strong odor that repels most of the garden pests that attack our plants, especially our leafy greens (lettuces, cabbage, kale, etc.). Green onions are tiny enough to be tucked anywhere you need in your garden to protect your vulnerable plants. It's not a fool-proof method of pest control, but it definitely helps.

reason three: green onions keep giving and giving

Green onions will continue growing throughout most of the year. You could start green onions indoors during winter, plant them out as soon as the ground softens, and enjoy fresh harvests throughout spring, summer, and fall, and even into winter. Then you start again the next year. If you live in a more mild climate, you can keep your green onions growing year round. Cut from them, and they'll just keep growing for you. What a pal!

Think you have a black thumb? Refer to yourself as "plant killer"?

Discover your own gardening strengths and find inspiration to grow your self further with our fun and brief Green Thumb Quiz. Based on your results, we'll send you resources to help you master whatever plants you'd like to grow.

Regrowing Your Own Green Onions Plant Is Making Garden Magic

Once you regrow your own green onions from kitchen scraps, you'll see why I call these little guys my garden BFFs, too. They're a great starter plant if you're still learning how to garden, especially if you want to believe that you do have a green thumb after all (which you definitely do!). Many would-be gardeners feel intimidated or think they have to go all out and grow every single thing. The truth is, growing something simple, cutting your own green onions from a container, can ease you into the joy of growing a little bit of your own food.

Cut from some green onions and watch this garden magic happen. Your new green onions will keep growing and giving and being your best friend forever. You can keep your pot on your patio or even in a windowsill year round and cut from the leaves whenever you need a little oniony flavor in your meals. You'll be amazed at how much just a little bit of something fresh from the garden can elevate your whole dish. Even if every other ingredient comes from the grocery store, having that one homegrown herb to throw in makes the entire meal feel exquisite. Boring to gourmet in the time it takes you to snip some leaves.

Garden magic indeed!

Thanks for helping me bring back the kitchen garden one indoor garden project at a time!

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How to Regrow Green Onions from the Store