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Kitchen Pro-Tip: Regrowing Lettuce Heads

regrow lettuce headsAs the cost of agricultural rises and our population continues to increase with no signs of slowing down, food prices grow and grow, putting monetary pressure on families. A trip to the grocery store can cause quite a dent on the pocketbook, especially if you’re feeding a large family.

At Pelican Water we steadfastly believe that conservation, recycling, and making the most of our natural resources is paramount both for the environment and for our general wellbeing. It may come as a surprise, but one of the best ways to save big on groceries is to simply not throw them out at all.

Lettuce is a staple food item in the kitchen, for salads and other vegetable intensive recipes. Did you know that you can completely regrow lettuce heads, replenishing your lettuce supply without taking another trip to the store? It’s easy to do, great for the environment, and cost-effective. Follow along for step-by-step instructions on regrowing lettuce heads in your own kitchen.

First, when you initially eat the lettuce you purchase from the store, be sure to cut the leaves about an inch from the bottom, or the head, to ensure the leaf can regrow later. Place the lettuce head in a dish or bowl of filtered water. The level can be pretty shallow – half an inch is plenty.

Place the head of lettuce on a windowsill or in another location where it’s guaranteed to soak up the sun. If your climate is dreary, maybe invest in some cheap grow lights. Change the water in the dish every 1 to 2 days for best results – filtered water will protect the lettuce from chlorine, contaminants and facilitate optimal growth. The roots will begin to grow from the bottom, and will elongate quickly in ideal conditions!

For best conditions, use the new lettuce about 10 days after you begin. Any longer and the lettuce you’re growing can become bitter. Eat your regrown lettuce before the leaves start to become less dense. A blue-green color means that your lettuce is overripe and should be eaten promptly.

Lettuce isn’t the only food you can heartily regrow from kitchen scraps. Much of the produce and seeded vegetables you buy from the store can be naturally replanted in your own backyard at little to no cost. Celery, lemongrass, and bean sprouts can be grown in a similar manner as lettuce with equally impressive results.

Foods like potatoes and ginger root are incredibly simple to grow in just a few inches of soil. These food items simply need to be replanted and will pop out of the ground in a few weeks. When you’re planting potato or ginger root food scraps, be careful to include an “eye” of the plant that acts as a root upon planting.

With time, ingenuity, and filtered water, lots of grocery items like lettuce can be easily regrown in your kitchen, on your windowsill, or in your family’s backyard.

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