Turmeric is categorized under “spices” and frequently used in Asian foods. It has lots of benefits which include: flavouring or colouring of butters, cheeses, curry powders e.t.c, medicinal purposes and also used in organic beauty products. Turmeric contains a chemical called “Curcumin” which reduces inflammation.
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Ginger is a plant with yellowish green flowers and common in warmer parts of Asia, India though can be also found in some parts of South America and Africa.
Just like turmeric, it benefits include food and medicinal purposes. Some of its medical applications include: osteoarthritis, menstrual cramps, diabetes e.t.c.
It is also used in manufacturing soaps and cosmetics. Similarly, it also contains certain chemicals which may reduce inflammation. Such chemicals also help in reducing nausea.
Both turmeric and ginger can be grown together. However, if your soil is bad or isn’t fertile enough, the best thing is amend it first.
Just like how they can be grown on a large farmland, they can also be grown at home. Both ginger and turmeric are categorized as “rhizomes”. O grow them, get plump rhizomes and store in a refrigerator. Once that is done, the planting process begins.
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1) Soil Preparation
To get a perfect soil, mix one third of existing soil with one third of pine bark mulch and one third of manure. A substitute for manure is a small quantity of slow release fertilizer. Ensure the mixture has been thoroughly mixed together before adding to the pot.
2) Plant Set-Up
Pour in 3-4 inches of soil into the pot and wet. After that add more soil about 3 inches below the top of the pot. Place the rhizome on the soil and ensure it lightly covered. The soil should be watered once more and placed in a spot where it can receive sunlight. At this stage, heat is very important and more important than light and so, it can be placed in a sunny window in place of a sunny spot/spot with sunrays.
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It is important that that the soil to be used must be a good one and if not, it must be amended first. Also, it is essential that the night-time temperatures are over 50°F before this stage is carried out. Also, both ginger and turmeric can tend to be invasive if grown in the ground. In situations where they are about to pass their expected boundaries, a shovel can be placed on the spot on the preferred growth limit and should be stomped on.
Both turmeric and ginger are heat-lovers. Ginger tends to grow faster than turmeric. Some years, turmeric might not put out leaves, not until July. Ginger’s faster growth can be characterized by its ability to reach 8 feet tall with many white fragrant blossoms by end of summer.
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Growing Of Turmeric & Ginger With Only Water
Another way by which turmeric and ginger can be grown is by filling a bucket close to halfway with water and placing them inside the water though separately.
Afterwards, keep in a warm place to obtain desired results. A disadvantage of this method is that the turmeric or ginger might end up going bad and therefore, there is a need for close monitoring of the water and ensure it is changed in situations where it ends up being cloudy or releasing a foul smell.
Turmeric and ginger can be kept in water for years.
Note: 1) Ensure to use chlorine-free water as chlorine can inhibit sprouting. Filtered water is preferable
2) If the bucket containing the turmeric or ginger is placed outside, it can give room for algae growth. Therefore, it should be constantly checked to ensure there is no algae growth as the presence of algae can also inhibit sprouting.
Planting of Turmeric and Ginger in Spring
Here, their seeds also known as rhizome fingers are cut to 2 to 3 inches with about two to four buds. After cutting, sterilize the cut areas with a 10% bleach solution and dried.
Note that seed pieces/rhizome fingers should be maintained in a potting mix under 80% humidity before they are planted. This is due to certain conditions in which sprouting of buds can be uneven.
Another option is the use of tissue culture plantlets which give a pathogen-free and uniform planting material. A disadvantage of this method is that lower yield and quality of first year harvest than that of rhizome seeds.
Planting of Turmeric & Ginger in Containers
Planting of turmeric and ginger in containers is followed by using a well-aerated potting mix with components such as coarse coconut coir, bark or peat.
Seed pieces are planted about 2 inches below the surface whereas tissue culture plantlets are planted at the crown. The top of the containers should be given enough empty spaces. This allows for mounding of the plants twice around 45 to 90 days after planting. Thus, increasing the size of the rhizome.
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Harvesting Scapes From Turmeric & Ginger Plants
The first shoots of turmeric and ginger can be harvested and used just like the rhizome. Ginger scapes have less concentrated flavour but spicy enough. Turmeric scapes can be broken off and mixed with milk together with other spices to produce golden milk. When turmeric and ginger plants are still young, their scapes have more of an earthy taste than a spicy taste.
Caring for Turmeric & Ginger in The Fall
In the fall, when the night-time temperatures are lower than 50°F, both plants experience leaf loss and go dormant for winter season. When this happens, the plant should be dug up in cases of in-ground planting and the pot containing the plant should be brought inside in the case of pot-planting.
After this is done, ensure the plants are stored in a cooler spot such as a garage or basement. However, it is important that when digging up, the fibrous root below the rhizome should be watched and ensured it is not affected in the process. After this is done, water a bit about once in 30 days. This helps to prevent the rhizome from drying out.
In this article, we looked at how to grow Ginger and turmeric. I hope you find this article helpful in understanding how to cultivate both ginger and turmeric. I will love to hear from you. Let me know if you have any questions.