By Diane Ako
As my six regular readers may know, I like gardening. I don't have a big yard, so a lot of it is in pots, though I've recently done a few things: I've started digging into my once-beautifully designed front "yard" (by "yard" I mean postcard-sized spit of land near the mailbox) which the previous owners had landscaped with low-maintenance, tropical plants; I've started buying big pots to place around the dog's yard in an effort to keep the plants safe from her trampling or pooping on them; and I've started researching what plants work well with the microclimates in order to best maximize my limited yard space.
This has led me to succulents to plant under the eaves of the house - that thin strip of land that will, in the summer, get blazing sun and little water, and where previous efforts to plant my favorite things (herbs) has failed. So far, I'm not sure. It's rainy now, so two of those succulents have rotted and died.
I've also looked further into shade-loving plants, which has brought me to culinary ginger. I'm Chinese: I like useful things. I have awapuhi, and have intentions of dividing my dad's honeycomb ginger when I have time, but I'm really excited about culinary ginger. Imagine never having to buy it again!
After research online, I bought a hand from an organic grocery store (Down to Earth) and cut it into seven pieces, each piece with a little eye that should eventually grow a sprout. I read that organic ginger lacks growth-retardant, but for experimentation, I also cut a chunk of chain-grocery store ginger to see what happens. Though, I've forgotten which ginger came from which store. Duh!
I planted a few in pots and a few directly into the ground, on the shady side of the house.
I did this on Halloween. Ginger is very slow, because it took months for it to sprout, and not all have sprouted yet. I think they will, because I see their eyes having green growth buds.
I have actually forgotten where I put three of the rhizomes. I remember the general location but I can't find them anymore. Maybe one day they'll be these beautiful leaves that will call out to me where to find them. (There seems to be a lot of memory-loss in this blog!)
Meanwhile, here's a progress update: