How to regrow salad at home - and save on waste during lockdown

These top tips on how to regrow salad and vegetables will help stop food waste and save money.

Published 19th May 2020
Updated 9 th Aug 2023

Discount supermarket Lidl has teamed up with a Royal Horticultural Society ambassador to give top tips on how to regrow salad at home.

Lidl has revealed how to regenerate your vegetables at home – from lettuce to spring onions – helping customers to make the most of their fresh produce in lockdown.

The retailer has joined forces with Jamie Butterworth, Royal Horticultural Society ambassador, to share top tips to regrow salad vegetables and all you need is a glass of water.

Lettuce and onions have been cited by WRAP - a government-backed waste reduction body -  as two of the topmost wasted food products in the UK, and what better way to reduce food waste than to regrow spent vegetables destined for the compost heap?

Jamie Butterworth said: “It really couldn’t be easier to ensure you have a fresh supply of crisp salad items and, the best part is, some vegetables can be regrown indoors without any compost."

Top tips

Lettuce for life

Jamie says: “Remove the leaves from a little gem lettuce by cutting them approximately 1-2 inches from the bottom. Make sure you don’t cut the lettuce in half or remove the centre.

"Pop the stem in a bowl – making sure it can stand up – and add an inch of water. Change the water every other today to keep it fresh and don’t let it dry out. Within less than a week, you’ll see new leaves start to poke through the centre. Easy!”

Super simple spring onions

Jamie continues: “It’s so easy to regrow spring onions  and one bulb could even produce 3 or 4 crops of leaves – how’s that for plant power?

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"Simply cut the leaves from the bulb, just above where it changes colour from white to green but make sure you leave the roots attached. Pop them root down in a small jar of water, making sure that the stem isn’t below the water level and you’ll see new leaves start to appear in just a few days.”

Perfect potted herbs

“When you buy a pot of herbs, you’re not just buying one plant, it’s made up of lots of individual plants. To make fresh potted herbs - such as basil, coriander and parsley last longer, you’ll need some multi-purpose compost and some small pots or toilet roll tubes work just as well.

"Remove from the pot, gently pull the clump of plants apart into 4 or 6 smaller plants then snip off any that look floppy. Pop in your pot of compost and then ‘pinch out’ the tips of the plants – find the first two big leaves on the stem and snip them off.

"Pop on the windowsill and watch them grow.”

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For those getting green-fingered in lockdown, Lidl has also launched a range of grow-your-own products including dwarf fruit trees, Mediterranean citrus plants and assorted fruit plants – from strawberries to tomatoes and bananas to coffee - with prices starting at just £2.49.

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Known for cake making, experimental jam recipes, Champagne, whisky and gin drinking (and the inability to cook Gnocchi), Rosalind is the Food and Drink Editor and whisky writer for The Scotsman, as well as hosting Scran, The Scotsman's food and drink podcast.
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