Getting Started on your Edible Garden at Home!

This article is part of the sustainability team initiative from Marina Bay Sands. During this self-isolation period, it’s the best time to protect our environment, and gardening is one of the easiest ways.

Want to make the most of your time at home? Why not spruce things up with some edible greens? 

Things you'll need to get started

  • Small pot or jar (3-6cm)
  • 1 Small knife or scissors (always remember to be careful while handling sharp objects!)
  • Cotton pads or soil
  • Fresh fruits or vegetables (or packet seeds)
  • A dash of sunlight & lots of patience

To embark on your journey of adding new life to your home, first find a space in your home to grow your seedlings. Prepare some containers and cotton pads as a temporary substitute for soil and take a trip to your very own pantry to find some cuttings and seeds before jumping online to buy them! You'd be surprised at the abundance of these cuttings and seeds that you can find! Get creative – your options are as far as your imagination can take you. Grow plants such as chilli, tomatoes and even rock melons! Kickstart your sustainability journey with these 5 plants you might find at home! 

Types of Plants 

Mint

All you need are some mint leaves with their stems to get started. 

  1. Cut the top growth of the stem (about 8cm in length), just below the leaf node – the point on the stem where leaves emerge. Remove the bottom leaves. 
  2. Place the stem in water until the stems have taken root. Do note to change the water to prevent aedes mosquitoes from breeding.
  3. Pot your mint plant! Mint grows fairly quickly and enjoys lots of sunlight. Due to the large area of mint leaves, they tend to lose water more quickly and will need more watering throughout the day. 
  4. Be sure to trim and harvest your mint plant often!

Coriander

To grow this commonly-used garnish, you will need a coriander stem with some leaves. 

  1. Cut the top growth of the stem (about 8cm in length), just below the leaf node – the point on the stem where leaves emerge. Remove the bottom leaves. 
  2. Place the stem in water until the stems have taken root. 
  3. Pot your coriander plant – after transferring to soil, it will take 3-4 weeks before new offshoots appear, and you will have a fully grown plant in a few months. 
  4. When flowers begin to grow, trim them off immediately. Enjoy your fresh herbs!

Alternatively, if you have coriander seeds at home, you can also grow them from seed! Coriander seeds are often found in the dry goods section of supermarkets as a spice. 

  1. Soak the coriander seeds in water overnight. 
  2. Use the seeds that have sunk to the bottom as they are more likely to germinate.
  3. Sow these coriander seeds ¼ inch deep in moist soil. 
  4. Water your plant lightly every day and expose it to morning sun. It will take approximately 10 days for a seedling to surface. 
  5. Once flowers begin to grow, trim them off immediately. Enjoy your fresh herbs!

Tip: This method works for Rosemary and Basil too.

Chilli

Packing a full punch of hot and spicy flavours, chillies are known to flourish in Singapore's hot and tropical weather. To begin, you will need a fresh chilli. 

  1. Slice the chilli into half. You can either plant the half chilli containing seeds directly into soil, or remove the seeds and let them dry overnight, and plant them in soil the next day. 
  2. Water it lightly every day and expose it to full sun.  
  3. Your chilli plant will take approximately 7-10 days to germinate, and you will need to replant it into a bigger container. Ensure to replant it deeper to allow the roots to grow. 
  4. Your chilli plant will bear fruit in approximately 60 days, and take another 10 days to ripen from green to red. 

Tomato

Vegetable or a fruit? Often thought of as a vegetable due to the nature of how we consume it, the tomato is actually a fruit as it is formed from the flowers of a tomato plant. All you need to get started is a fresh tomato! 

  1. Grab the freshest tomato you can find at home and slice it up. 
  2. You will only require a single slice with seeds (save the rest for your next meal!) 
  3. Place your single slice in a container of soil and top with a light layer of soil. Water it lightly. 
  4. Keep this in a warm and dark environment and once germinated, place it back into sunlight. 
  5. Transplant your seedlings into a larger pot of soil for it to grow successfully. Be sure to water this plant multiple times a day while giving it loads of sunlight! 
  6. To further ensure the success of your tomato plant, ensure the soil remains moist by covering it with crushed leaves/eggs or even cardboard. 

Rock Melon

Have a ripe rock melon at home that you're waiting to devour? Don't forget to save its seeds! 

  1. Place the rock melon seeds in a container of damp soil and leave it in a warm and dark environment. 
  2. Once germinated, replant the rock melon to one seedling per pot. 
  3. Lightly water your plant and expose it to full sun daily
  4. Watch your plant blossom and once fruits start to bear, water only if soil is dry and/or leaves show signs of wilting.
  5. Harvest your rock melons when no force is needed to pluck the fruit, and a good indicator is also when its colour turns from green to grey or yellow  

Conclusion 

This mini edible home garden is a perfect project for you and your family during this stay-home period. Be sure to read up on the plant you wish to grow to better your chances at success! 

Marina Bay Sands is home to the RISE Herb Garden, where over 100 edible plants are specially grown, nurtured, and harvested for our guests to enjoy. 

#SandsECO360

Sources:

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