The Great Plant Escape
Plantenstein Is the Suspect!


After Lunch Gardening

Plant parts that are normally thrown away can be beautiful houseplants. Carrots, sweet potatoes, turnips, and avocados are plants that have beautiful greenery.

Try some of the following.


Plants can be started by suspending the seed with toothpicks in a glass of water. However, it may be easier to plant it in soil. Let the pit dry for a day. Peel off the dark, brown covering. Put the pit in a pot filled with potting soil, pointed end up. Leave about one-third of the pit showing. A shoot should appear in about 4-6 weeks.

Carrot, Beets, Rutabaga, or Turnips

These plants produce a graceful leafy and often colorful plant. Cut a one-inch section from the top of the vegetable and plant it in moist sand, with only the upper part exposed. Small leaves will appear in about 10 days. Be sure to keep the plant moist.


Cut the top off the pineapple with about 1/2 - 1 inch of fruit attached. Let the top dry out for one to two days. Place the top in a shallow pot filled with potting soil. Keep the potting soil moist. The top should root in about 6-8 weeks.Another method is to twist the top off the fruit. Remove the lower leaves exposing one to two inches of the stem. Place the top in a small glass of water so the water is just below the lowest leaves. In about two weeks you should see roots starting to form. Transplant when about half the glass is filled with roots.


The inside of a papaya is packed with numerous seeds. Each seed is wrapped in jelly-like covering that needs to be removed before planting. Rubbing the seeds together in a bowl of water works well. After the covering is removed, put the seeds in a glass of water. Those that float should be thrown away as they will not germinate. Place the seeds in a pot filled with potting soil. Cover the seeds with about 1/2 inch of soil. Keep moist. Seeds should germinate in about 4-6 weeks.


Seeds of orange, lime, lemon and grapefruit are easy to grow. Soak seeds in water overnight. Plant them about one inch deep in a pot filled with potting soil. Put 2-3 seeds in each pot.


Remove as much of the fruit from the pit as possible. The remainder can be easily scraped off with a toothbrush and water. After the pit is clean, soak the seed in warm water for five days. Change the water daily and replace with warm water. Plant the pit with the "eye" up. The "eye" is a flattened spot where the fruit was joined to the stem. Cover the pit with about 1/2 inch of soil. Don't lay the seed flat. Lay it on end with the "eye" up. Keep moist. The seed may germinate in two weeks or take four months. Be patient. To try and get quicker germination, use very ripe fruit.

Congratulations! You've solved Case #4. Now go on to Case #5 to discover some mysterious parts that surprise!

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Home Case 1 - In Search of Green Life Case 2 - Soiled Again! Case 3 - Is It Dust, Dirt, Dandruff or a Seed? Case 4 - Plantenstein Is the Suspect! Case 5 - Mysterious Parts That Surprise! Case 6 - You've Learned the Mysteries of Green Life Glossary Links Case Brief Facts Activities Teacher's Guide Credits The Great Plant Escape