If your tastebuds have ever fallen in love with the unique flavors of Indian and Asian cooking, then you likely have turmeric root to thank. Because of its popularity, more and more people are curious about learning how to grow turmeric root indoors.
The turmeric plant is known for its bright, golden-orange color and intense flavor. It has a chemical called curcumin in its fleshy rhizomes, giving it tremendous color and health benefits.
Learning how to grow turmeric at home is an excellent place to start if you’re a beginner gardener. These plants are easy to grow from existing turmeric rhizomes and don’t require an excessive amount of care.
About Turmeric Root
Growing turmeric indoors not only helps you learn more about gardening root veggies, but it allows you to incorporate this superfood into a daily diet that benefits the whole family.
Turmeric root is also called Curcuma longa or Indian saffron. While typically not on most people’s root vegetables list, it is a member of the ginger family, and the roots are considered medicinal herbs. This belief likely originated in India, where it is most commonly used for consumption.
Many important studies have been conducted that prove that turmeric is one of the plants with the most health benefits of all foods. Turmeric leaves and roots are a natural anti-inflammatory and antioxidant solution. This root improves bodily systems.
It boosts brain function, lowers the risk for brain and heart diseases, prevents some cancers and Alzheimer’s disease, and even reduces arthritis pain and depression.
Aside from the impressive benefits of eating turmeric, learning how to grow turmeric root indoors is a great way to expand your gardening knowledge.
Most turmeric grows outdoors in USDA hardiness zones eight through 11. However, growing turmeric indoors is a way to get around this obstacle.
How to Grow Turmeric Root Indoors
Figuring out how to grow turmeric at home or grow ginger indoors is relatively simple and doesn’t require unnecessary trips to a nursery. Most people buy their own turmeric right from the grocery store or other food stores. All you need is a few sections of tubers.
They won’t sprout if they’ve been treated with growth retardant, but most people are lucky enough to find ones that grow perfectly fine. If you don’t want to take the risk, it is always a safe choice to buy them from a reputable nursery.
How to Grow Turmeric at Home
Growing turmeric at home is an easy way to develop a tropical plant without living in a tropical region. To grow your own turmeric, cultivate them annually about eight to ten weeks before your last expected frost date. This is also when to plant ginger root.
This time frame gives you a head start on the growing season since it takes 200 to 300 days for the plant to fully mature. If they haven’t started sprouting, place them in a moist paper towel and inside a plastic bag on a sunny windowsill to get them started.
To plant turmeric in pots, set individual fingers of fresh turmeric in a seed-starting tray with plenty of drainage holes. If they have already started sprouting or have bumps on them, place them bump or sprout side up in the potting soil.
Cover them with two inches of the soil and put them under grow lights or on a heat mat to keep the overall temperature around 80°F to 85°F.
Keep the soil evenly moist without oversaturating it. After they are about an inch or two tall, transplant them to larger, individual pots and lower the temperature to 70°F.
Tips for Growing Turmeric Indoors
Turmeric grows best when planted in the early spring and placed in an area with full sun. Fertilize them every few weeks with liquid fertilizer or another organic fertilizer. Keep the soil pH between 4.5 and 7.5 and amend it occasionally with organic matter like mulch.
Harvesting and Storing Turmeric
When is ginger ready to harvest? What about turmeric? It is time to harvest turmeric when the leaves and stems brown and dry out. The way to harvest turmeric is to cut off the stems until they are about an inch above the rhizomes and wash away the dirt on them.
Turmeric stays fresh in an airtight container in the fridge for about six months and it’s also a great way to preserve ginger root at home. You can also make a DIY turmeric powder at home if you want it to store even longer.
Put your fresh tumeric into a large pot of boiling water and simmer for up to an hour or until the pieces are easily pierced all the way through with a fork.
Drain the water and rub off the skin of the roots. Dry the turmeric in a food dehydrator at 140°F until entirely brittle. Grind the dried pieces in a pepper mill or pestle and mortar before storing them in an airtight container.
Learning how to grow turmeric at home is an easy task that is highly beneficial. The bright orange color and unique flavor adds exciting recipes to your food rotation and makes you feel and work better overall.
If learning how to grow turmeric root indoors has helped you spice up your favorite foods, share these tips for growing turmeric indoors on Facebook and Pinterest.