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How to Grow Onions and Chives From Discarded Roots

By Contributor

Many people enjoy growing vegetables and herbs in indoor pots. One vegetable that grows well in both indoor and outdoor gardens are chives and green onions. The next time you use a chive or green onion to cook with, don't throw away the root section. The next time you use a green onion, save the white root section instead of throwing it in the trash. You don't need the entire root section, you only need about 1/2-inch to grow onions.

Fill a shallow open container with plain tap water. You want to completely cover the onion root with water. Do not try to grow onions roots in a sealed container as they will rot.

Place the container in a sunny location to grow onions. The onion plants don't need direct sunlight so any room that is fairly well lit will work. Although the more sun they receive the faster they will grow.

Replace the water every few days as it evaporates. As the onions grow, stand them upright by leaning them against the side of the container, so that the top part of the onion is not submerged in water. The onion roots will grow at an amazing rate; sometimes up to 1/4-inch day. The onions will grow fine in the water container, but once they are fully grown, you may want to plant them in a small container with soil.

Grow more chives or green onions, by simply snipping what you need from the green top part of the onion. Leave the remainder in the pot to grow more onions.


Things You Will Need

  • Water
  • Shallow bowl
  • 1 or more green onion roots


  • The next time you have green onions that are going bad in your refrigerator, pull them out and plant the roots to grow onions. They are still plantable long after they have wilted and undesirable to eat.

About the Author


This article was created by a professional writer and edited by experienced copy editors, both qualified members of the Demand Media Studios community. All articles go through an editorial process that includes subject matter guidelines, plagiarism review, fact-checking, and other steps in an effort to provide reliable information.