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Planting and Hilling Ginger

Ginger is a rhizome that grows under the soil.  The underground stems swell and grow to form the baby ginger that will be harvested.  Ginger needs to be hilled so that stems will grow up and out into the hill you make for it.  Yields will be diminished if you choose not to hill or fertilize.

Hoop house/High Tunnel Planting and Hilling:
- Soil temps should be actively warming from 55F in the hoop house or high tunnel when transplantingpresprouted ginger  (cheap soil probes placed in several spots in the tunnel are very handy for determining soil temps)

- Soil temps can be increased earlier by using row covers placed on the beds where ginger will be planted

- If planting directly into the ground, beds are three feet on center (this allows room for hilling and rhizome growth)

- Rows or beds, should be about three to four feet apart

- Ginger is planted in the center of the bed at the bottom of a 6 inch trench (6 inches measured from original soil level)

- If this depth is not attainable, leave room for soil to be hilled around crop as it grows so that eventual hilling totals about 12 inches

- Leave enough soil on the sides to hill later or bring in soil to hill with

- Mix fertilizers and/or compost in bottom of trench*

- Place sprouted ginger pieces about 5 inches apart (reminder: rate is about 30 lbs per 100 feet = about 1 seed piece per 5 inches on center) in the bottom of the trench

- Cover with about two inches of soil; fertilization application at this time

- After a few weeks, when small weeds begin to emerge, smother them with a small layer of soil or use a flame weeder until ginger shoots emerge

- As the shoot (green part) grows check the base of the shoot(s) for swelling and a vibrant pink color – this will take anywhere from 4-6 weeks

- When pink color is observed, hill the crop with about 4 inches of soil and fertilize again (link to fertilization page here)

- When new rhizomes grow near the soil surface, hill and fertilize again – this will take another 2-4 weeks

- Hill slightly and fertilize*, for a third time, if rhizomes reach the soil surface again

*Each growers' fertilization requirements will vary, depending upon the soil where crops are grown.  Please see Fertilization page for recommendations. Email or call us if you have questions.

Bag/Container Culture:
- Use cocopeat (also known as cocofiber, coconut coir) or a well-drained soilless media or any well-drained media that is fully composted (won’t heat up while ginger is growing) Click here to order cocopeat!

- Bag or pot must be wide and deep to allow for rhizomes to grow out and up and to have room for hilling

- For every expanded kg of cocopeat mix in a mild fertilizer (ex. six ounces of 4-6-4) and gypsum (make word fertilizer a link to fert sources).  Rates will depend upon analysis of fertilizer used

- Fill bottom of bag/pot with about 4-6 inches of media

- Plant presprouted seed into media being sure that seeds are at proper spacing.  This allows rhizomes the room to grow in container culture

- Cover lightly with media

- Follow instructions above for hilling at the appropriate time


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