If you’ve ever wondered, “How do you grow turmeric?” this article covers planting, caring, and harvesting this yellow superfood. You’ve probably heard of the many health benefits of turmeric, such as preventing cancer, Alzheimer’s, and heart disease. Mix them with your food, make turmeric tea, or drink them as a healthy juice.
While you can easily purchase turmeric almost anywhere in the UK, it’s cheaper and more sustainable to grow them yourself.
Turmeric grows best if you start planting it indoors during the last few months of winter. It’s presentable enough to become a houseplant, or you can place your turmeric plant outside once there are no signs of frost and the weather is warm enough.
If you can plant pepper and other warm-weather plants, that’s the best time to place your turmeric outside. Your turmeric can grow outdoors from planting to harvesting for those living in Zones 8 to 11.
For every six to eight inches of the rhizome, you’ll need at least a 14-inch pot. And, of course, you’ll need a healthy mix of potting soil. Most gardeners in the UK make sense to start planting your rhizomes in smaller pots and only transfer them to larger containers once they’ve sprouted.
Here’s how you can adequately plant your rhizomes:
Divide your rhizomes into separate parts. Make sure each part has two to three buds.
Fill your pots with a good mixture of potting soil about halfway through the container.
Place the divided rhizome on the soil and lightly cover with rhizomes with more soil.
Water your turmeric seeds until the soil is moist. Place your plants inside a mini polytunnel or a container to cover them.
Place your mini polytunnel in the warmest area of your house with an ideal temperature of 85 to 95 degrees F. If you place your plants in areas with low temperatures, and there’s a greater chance that your rhizome will rot.
If you can’t find a warm spot, you can customise your polytunnel by adding a heating lamp, wrapping the walls with bubble wrap (to heat the inside of your greenhouse), or install a heating system.
Your turmeric plants need TLC for them to grow and thrive. Here are two things you should remember when caring for your turmeric plants:
Keep your turmeric warm
Once you’ve planted your rhizomes, check on them every few days, and once you see them sprouting, move your mini polytunnel to a windowsill or a sunnier place. Keep in mind that the ideal growing temperature of turmeric at this stage is 76 to 86 degrees F. If the indoors and outdoors are warm, you can cool your mini polytunnel by encouraging sufficient ventilation.
Water your plants when necessary
Water your turmeric as needed. Remember to keep the soil moist but never wet or soggy. You can mist your leaves two times a day with water to increase humidity. If the soil is dry, this will reduce your turmeric harvest.
The browning and drying of leaves and stems are an indication that your turmeric is ready for harvest. The harvesting condition usually happens around 8 to 10 months after planting them. Take our fresh turmeric out, and make sure to cut the stems about an inch above the rhizomes.
Why Plant Turmeric in a Mini Greenhouse?
Turmeric grows best under full sun and heat. If you live in colder areas of the UK, you can still plant turmeric by using a greenhouse. Here are some of the reasons why you should plant turmeric in a mini greenhouse:
Protect your plants from pests that attack your turmeric plants
Thrips, lacewing bug, shoot borer, rhizome scale, and leaf roller are some of the harmful insects that can harm your turmeric plants. If you keep your plants inside a mini greenhouse, you’ll lower the risk of attracting these pesky pests, as well as other diseases affecting neighbouring plants.
Keep them safe from low temperatures and inclement weather
Turmeric does not grow well in low temperatures. If you live in colder UK areas, you can still plant turmeric by keeping them inside a temperature-controlled greenhouse. In this way, your plants will stay safe from storms, cold, and heavy rain.
Great for those in the UK who have limited garden space
Suppose you love to plant turmeric and other produce but don’t have enough space, mini polytunnels a perfect alternative. The standard size of mini polytunnels around 6 feet tall, but there are smaller sizes if this is still too big for you. You can place your mini polytunnel on your balconies, patios, and even on tabletops. Even though mini-greenhouses are small, they offer the same benefits as a regular-sized greenhouse.
Start planting early
With a mini greenhouse, you can start planting turmeric even before the cold season begins in your UK area. Once the weather gets warmer, you can transplant your turmeric plants into your UK garden. In this way, you’ll be able to enjoy an earlier harvest.
The Bottom Line
So, how do you grow turmeric? Make sure your turmeric gets a lot of sunlight, water them as needed, and keep them warm. By keeping these tips in mind, you’ll be able to enjoy your turmeric harvest.