The Accidental Celery · Vegetables

One-month update: The accidental celery

Quick recap:

It all started on March 8th, with a yellowish, sad, not very alive-looking celery bottom. It was dried, it had been refrigerated, and I didn’t have high-hopes (was bracing myself so I wouldn’t feel bad) that it would regrow.

But voila, it grew super well and was planted in soil on March 15th. It was so unexpected, I refer to her as The Accidental Celery (complete story here).

It has been a month now, so how has it been for Ms. Accidental Celery?

In short, she is now a mini-giant, with relatively slim stalks. No better way to describe the growth then in pictures:

March 15: Moved from water to soil
Mar 15-18

March 17: Just two days later, much more leaves
Mar 17-04.jpg

March 19: The day-by-day growth is unbelievable
Mar 19-12.jpg

March 21: Stalks starting to be more prominent
Mar 21-05.jpg

March 23: Leaves extending beyond pot, just 8 days after planted in soil
Mar 23-12.jpg

March 25: Trimmed off some old stalks protruding out of the soil
Mar 25-23.jpg

March 27: Continue to observe visible growth every day
mar-27-10.jpg

March 30: Lots of leaves and stalks
Mar 30-09.jpg

April 1: Felt that the top soil was thinning, added a thin layer of soil to better cover the base. New growth from the center.
Apr 1 PM-5.jpg

April 2: Some of the stalks were gaining significant height
Apr 2-01.jpg

April 4: Lots of leaves, lots of stems (despite mostly on the slimmer side)
apr-4-08.jpg

April 12: Mini-giant in the making…
Apr 12-13.jpg

April 14: Mini-giant, this is just after one month in soil
Apr 14-32.jpg

So yes, the accidental celery is growing well, gained much much leaves and stalks, but the stalks are still on the slim side. I’m not sure if this is just a compromise when regrowing from scrap, or if it will mature into larger stalks later on. Will have to wait and see.

On top of adding dry organic fertilizer (3.5N – 3P – 3K) in the initial potting mix, I have lightly fertilized the plant with the same dry organic fertilizer twice, about once every two weeks. I’d poke holes in the soil with my fingers around the plant, drop a couple fertilizers in, and bury it up.

I kept it in partial shade (was afraid it would get overheated), and watered deeply when the soil was on the dry side (never fully dried). This came down to watering the plant every three days or so.

I’m also starting to think about harvesting, and if I should wait until it becomes a huge plant, or harvest along the way as it continues to produce new stalks. I’m leaning towards at least pre-harvesting the outer, thicker, darker-green stalks since they are more mature, and decide later on the rest.

Another issue to figure out is whether I will need to perform blanching (covering the stalks from sunlight before harvesting, which will lighten the color and add sweetness to the taste). Will play by ear for now and decide down the road.

(Warning: yucky image ahead, proceed with caution, be prepared to scroll fast if grossed out)

Upkeep was very easy along the way, I don’t recall seeing any pest in the leaves or stems. However just today morning, I did encounter weird white worm-like stuff on the base of only three stems, which I was able to wash out using a insecticidal soap + diatomite earth mix spray. I finally accumulated enough bravery after the spray and touched it (with gloves of course), but it just sort of diluted in my hands, and did not feel worm-like.

Hmm…. tried searching online but didn’t find anything. Mystery…. Will continue to closely monitor the plant in case of reoccurrence.

(Warning: yucky image ahead, proceed with caution, be prepared to scroll fast if grossed out)

Apr 14-23.jpg

Favorite how-to guide on growing celery

In English: How to grow celery

Side story: another celery stalk

Earlier this month, I was given another celery scrap, but this time only the heart of the celery, which looks like this:
Apr 6-04

I decided to try it out anyways and soaked it in water. Just the next day, the leaves and stalks turned green and looked more alive. Comparing to my previous experience with Ms. Accidental Celery, this feels a little like cheating. Hee hee.

Three days later, with the stalks firming up, I moved it into soil.

April 8: Moving from water to soil
Apr 08-2.jpg

April 11: Couple days later, leaves and stalks are greener and healthier
Apr 11-15.jpg

April 14: Today
Apr 14-05.jpg

The journey of Ms. Accidental Celery

The Vege Girl Project: Day 41

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