You can grow ginger in containers easily

Wouldn’t you like to have a touch of the Orient growing in your kitchen garden? It’s easy to grow ginger in containers or in your garden. It is perennial in the tropics and in sub-tropical countries, but it can be grown in a season in other climates as well.

you can grow ginger in containers easily

It’s primary requirements are:

  • dappled sunlight
  • water
  • heat
  • a place out of direct wind.

But don’t be discouraged if you can only satisfy a couple of the requirements. Why not give it a try this year?

How to grow ginger in containers

you can grow ginger in containers easily

I don’t have a garden in the ground so I grow ginger in containers. This is a step by step guide to teach you how to do it too.

Choosing your container

You can experiment with the depth of your container. Mine is about 6″ deep and a foot and a half wide. Your rhizomes will only be as big as the container you grow them in. So give them room to grow. Good drainage is a must as well. You don’t want your ginger standing in water. It likes water, but the rhizomes will rot if left standing in water.

Soil requirements

Ginger likes a soil rich in organic matter. If you can’t satisfy this requirement then you need to feed your ginger. I fed mine with fish emulsion and guano, the latter which is high in Nitrogen. The soil pH it prefers is between 5.5 and 6. Some people mix compost with potting soil when planting in containers. (There are two kinds of guano. One is from rats and one is from seabirds. It’s sea bird manure, basically.)

you can grow ginger in containers easily

Light, heat and wind

I have been growing my ginger on a rooftop in Hong Kong that receives unrelenting sunshine and heat for most of the summer months, with diminished amounts between November and April. It gets lots of wind as well. This could be why mine looks a little burned around the edges! But I don’t let that discourage me from growing ginger. As you can see it still grows nicely and I got a good harvest after one year of growth.

If I had a choice, I would definitely select a location that is more protected from the wind and the fierce sunshine. The likely reason that it survived so well, was because of the high humidity of our summer climate. There is more of a danger of it getting washed out of the pot with the heavy rains we get sometimes!

In cooler climates, I believe you need a place with more sunshine so you can get the heat ginger needs to grow well. Protection from the wind is a must to prevent desiccation of the plant leaves.

How do you plant ginger in the soil?

you can grow ginger in containers easily

To grow ginger in containers I planted a piece of rhizome that had eyes already bulging ¬†and starting to send out a green shoot on top of the soil and pressed it in. It’s okay to tuck it in with a little soil, but there’s no need to bury the rhizome. By the look of the picture above, my ginger eventually got covered in soil from all the heavy rains and because I kept dumping soil on top of it. I used ginger I bought at the market since I don’t know where else to buy it here. It grew just fine.

In cooler climates, you can start your ginger in containers inside or in a greenhouse and move outside to the garden later when the weather is warm and no chance of frost. I would transplant it right into the garden if you had the right location.

How do you know when to harvest?

you can grow ginger in containers easily

You can harvest your ginger when the leaves die back. In cooler climates, you can overwinter your ginger in a cool, not freezing, basement and let it dry out. In late winter, bring it into a warmer room and give it lots of good light so it will start growing again. To give you an idea how cool you can store it, the lowest temperature my ginger survived was around 4 C. But that was for a short time only. Generally, winter temperature are between 10 C and 21 C.

Special care

The nice thing about ginger is that it doesn’t require any special care. In fact, in my garden it seems to survive on benign neglect. I just gave it a bit of fish emulsion mixed in water and some guano now and again and that’s it. A plant’s gotta be tough to survive in my garden! Hope this helps you see how easy it is to grow ginger in containers.

What kind of herbs and vegetables do you grow that aren’t common in your area? Leave a comment, please!

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