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The Damsel has been playing with more kitchen castoffs.







This was a stump from a head of romaine. The Damsel just stuck the stump in a dish of water and waited. This is about two weeks old.

To be clear, you’ll put the weird, flat, brownish side down, the cut (or ripped) side up, in the dish of water. All you need to do is occasionally refill the water.

The regrowing leaves are small but tasty.

The Damsel has heard that people take a regrowing stump and plant it (as in the celery stump on THIS page) but she recommends this hesitantly. The once that she tried this, the little growing leaves immediately withered and died. She felt sort of upset about the whole thing, until she remembered this was only a stump that she was going to throw away anyway.

She’s also heard rumors about all sorts of things growing in compost piles on an accidental basis. Apparently this tells us that some plants don’t need much fussing with at all–they just want to grow, grow, grow.

If any Old School students successfully plant a romaine lettuce stump, let the Damsel know for immediate extra credit.

Also, be aware that if you grow lettuce the traditional way in your garden–beginning with actual seeds or bedding plants–you can harvest from it repeatedly. Trim leaves as you need them for eating instead of pulling the plant. Depending on your growing season, you can expect to be able to take several cuttings from the same lettuce plant.

Bring on the tomatoes and bacon.

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  • Jamie

    Well, I am embarrassed to say that I don’t understand. No dunce cap for me, please. I raise my hand with a question. What side goes in the water? And your regrow picture looks like a bowl of water. Is that right? Do your mean that flat, bought end goes in first or the end from which I ripped the leaves? I wonder, since these regrows seem so hardy, if I put the wrong side in the water if the whole thing would sort itself out and regrow anyways. Anyways, this is fun and my window sill is getting crowded!

    • thedamselindisdress

      Jamie! Thanks for bringing this to my attention…I’m going to hurry right back over there and fix it up. You are right, the flat bought end goes down, and the cut end goes up. Margot (The Damsel)

      • Jamie

        Thanks, Damsel, for the reply and clarification. And to be fair, when I look over my question and realize all of the typos and missing articles and grammar issues, one wonders how you understood my question! Sorry!

  • Momonine

    This is true in the DR –even dead stumps come alive with no one caring a bit about it.

  • Tussy

    We live in hot, humid Houston where my compost pile had all sorts of reasons to take on a life of its own, including when an avocado tree burst from the middle of it and did quite well until the hurricane in 2008 wiped it out!

    • thedamselindisdress

      wow! An avocado tree!!!! I wonder how old they have to be before they produce. Thanks for visiting the Old School…
      Margot (The Damsel)

  • kristy.leblanc

    The Damsel is my hero. I love projects like this. I went through a phase where I looked at food I was about toss and thought, ‘couldn’t hurt to put it in some dirt and see if it would grow’, got some nice garlic that way, and some seeds for a pepper plant… but this approach takes it to a whole new level… a level I like mightily.

    • thedamselindisdress

      Thanks, Kristy! I love hearing this.
      Margot (The Damsel)

  • I sure wanted to Pin this article but it will only  pin the picture?

    • thedamselindisdress

      Yes, it pins the picture only, but the picture will be clickable, and will take you back to my site when you click all the way into it. Let me know if you have any problems. Margot (The Damsel)

  • Sk

    I’ve really been enjoying your experiments with regrowing produce!  Your mention of the celery made me think of an interesting blog post I read about using the OTHER end of the celery people usually discard: the leafy end.  I’m not affiliated with this blog, but thought you might find it interesting:


    • thedamselindisdress

      Hey, thanks for the super cool link! I happen to love using the leaves from celery, so this was great. Margot (The Damsel)

  • Jamie

    ” I’m waiting….” 
    Which movie is that from?
    Sorta fits the situation, Damsel. 

    • thedamselindisdress

      Jamie…you’re waiting…are you waiting for your stump to start growing? Or did you ask me a question that I’ve neglected to answer for you? ***blush
      and I’m terrible about movie quotes, unless it’s from the Princess Bride. Then I rock. 🙂
      Margot (The Damsel)

  • Jamie

    Waiting for some new Old School instruction on somethin’! But, now you’ve called my bluff and I sound selfishly demanding. You just take your time and when you’re ready, I’ll be here to learn some more old stuff. 

    • thedamselindisdress

      Jamie, I am SO SORRY it’s taking me so long to post. It’s terrible, I know. Hopefully in the next couple of days I can get my life under control.
      Crazy Damsel

  • Toosassy2ride

    I’ve never thought of trying it with lettuce.  My neighbor does that with the tops of pineapples, although in dirt and they turn into quite nice plants.  🙂

    • thedamselindisdress

      Do they actually grow pineapples?

      Margot (The Damsel)

      • AnnieB1912

        I plant my pineapple tops as well. With an appropriate climate and care, the plant will produce a new pineapple in the 2nd or 3rd year. 

        • thedamselindisdress

          I’d love to try this! Sounds fun.
          Margot (The Damsel)

  • Lparr

    Hello Damsel, I am new to your site and read this post. I had just learned about replanting Romaine Lettuce stumps and put mine in some water on Memorial Day and a couple in my raised bed in the garden. The one in water has already begun to sprout green leaves in just 3 days!! How amazing!! I haven’t checked on the ones in my garden yet, since it has been raining. I will let you know soon! 🙂

    • thedamselindisdress

      Yay! This makes my day. Do let me know!
      Margot (The Damsel)

  • My stump has been in water for about 3 weeks…when do you move it to soil?

    • thedamselindisdress

      Is it growing some nice leaves? Does it have any roots? How is your weather outside?
      Margot (The Damsel)