Turmeric is a super spice. Many experts believe that turmeric may have over 600 potential preventive and therapeutic applications.
It has both antiseptic and antibacterial properties, which make it great for cleaning and treating wounds. But what makes turmeric so popular is its anti-inflammatory properties that have been studied to rival ibuprofen.
If you find turmeric to be expensive or enjoy growing your own food, keep on reading.
How To Grow Turmeric Indoors
Similar to ginger, turmeric is grown from rhizomes (root cuttings). Turmeric does not propagate seeds. So all you need is one turmeric root which you can find at your local health stores.
To grow turmeric indoors, just follow these simple steps:
- Break a larger rhizome into a small rhizome piece that has two or three buds.
- Fill your pots with rich organic soil, which is lightly moist but well drained.
- Place it about two inches below the surface of the soil, with the buds facing up.
- Water the container.
That’s all there is to it!
Note: Turmeric will benefit from bi-monthly feedings of a good organic fertilizer or compost tea.
How To Water Turmeric
Turmeric likes water. Keep the soil moist, particularly in hot, dry climates. Try watering it once every 2 days or misting with a spray bottle. If you live in cooler climates, water less frequently. The key here is to keep the soil from ever getting soggy.
How To Harvest Turmeric
Turmeric takes between 8 to 10 months for the edible rhizomes to mature. While the leaves and stems are edible, most people harvest turmeric only for its roots. Most herbs can be harvested throughout the growing season, but turmeric root is best if harvested all at once when mature.
When the rhizomes are large enough, dig up all rhizomes from the pot. They are best if all harvested at once.
Dig up the rhizomes and save a few pieces to plant for the following season. Make sure to change the soil, though, because the original plant probably depleted it of all its nutrients.
Storage and Use
Turmeric roots should be kept in a cool, dry place until use.
When you are ready to use them, follow these directions:
- Boil the roots for 45 minutes.
- Dry the turmeric for approximately one week.
- Wearing gloves to prevent dying your hands bright yellow, peel the roots.
- Grind the peeled rhizomes into the lovely spice that is used in so many recipes.