How To Grow Celery (& When): Regrow Celery From Stalks or Scraps in Containers

Georgette Kilgore headshot, wearing 8 Billion Trees shirt with forest in the background.Written by Georgette Kilgore

Gardening | February 15, 2024

Woman holding up a bunch of celery wonders how to grow celery and if there’s a guide to growing celery that shows how to regrow celery from stalks, scraps, seeds.

When learning how to grow celery for the first time, using scraps and stalks, it might seem intimidating.

But, there’s no need to worry. Growing celery is simple and fun. Plus, you’ll harvest delicious rewards for your efforts.

You don’t need a massive garden or a green thumb to grow this staple of soups, you can regrow celery right from the stalk.

This complete guide outlines all the steps you’ll need to follow, and provides how to care for celery tips and more.

Growing vegetables at home is fulfilling and fun for the entire family, and learning how to grow celery is simply delicious!

How To Grow Celery in Simple Steps

If you are planning planting projects and are wondering how to plant celery for your kitchen but are still determining where to start, you will be glad to know that it takes only a few steps.

Starting from seeds is slightly different than starting from a stalk to grow celery.

Graphics showing the steps for growing celery.

First, you identify which celery type you want to grow from the several available options. You can regrow the crop from seeds, stalks, or transplants, each with various needs.

Your container or planting site will depend on your preferred pre-planting state. The next step is to pick a suitable planter that will accommodate your celery, but avoid clay which soaks in water, denying your celery moisture.

Afterward, fill two-thirds of the container with a mixture of soil and organic matter, then place your celery seedling or seed and cover. Celery loves water, and you can maintain that, ensuring that the spoil doesn’t dry up.

Celery usually takes time to grow, and you can speed up the process by watering, fertilizing, and caring for it. In about four months, your crop will be ready for harvesting, and you can remove the stalks or entire head from the soil.1

How To Grow Celery From Stalk

Like green onions and other vegetables that grow long stalks, you can grow celery from the stalks and have an unlimited supply for your consumption.

You need the bottom part from your scraps and a tiny clean container filled with water.

After placing the stalks, ensure that the water covers about two-thirds and let it sit for a few days, where you will notice sprouts on the cutting. You can exchange the water if its level drops or it gets dirty, and when the growth increases, it indicates that it is time to replant.

You can transfer the sprouting celery to your garden or indoor container filled with fertile soil and keep watering and caring for it. The earth provides the celery the nutrients it needs to grow, which water cannot fully provide.

How To Grow Celery From Scraps at Home

The scraps you throw in the bin can be handy.2 You can cut about two inches off the celery’s base, place it in a glass of water, and let it sit under your kitchen window for sunlight access.

It is best to keep changing the water after a few days, ensuring the base stays submerged.

Celery growing in a tin container showing how to grow Celery from scraps at home.

(Image: milivigerova23)

You should see tiny leaves sprouting from the center, but the celery shouldn’t stay too long in the water, otherwise it will start rotting. It is best to transplant the stalks to a container filled with fertile soil before the leaves start discoloring.3

You can make a deep hole in the potting mix and set the celery in place. The crop thrives in cold weather and wet soil.

If you reside in a hot area, it’s best to plant it under a shade to protect it from the scorching sun.

How To Grow Celery From Seed

Besides using seedlings and transplants, celery can also grow from seeds. When you buy the tiny seed variety you need from the store, first soak them in warm water to improve their germination.

Next, press the seed on the soil, and cover the planter with plastic to conserve moisture. The seeds should sprout in a few days or weeks, and when they do, place them under a grow light for about 16 hours daily and check that the temperatures are between 70-75 degrees (F).

The seedlings also need regular misting to improve their growth, and when they reach 2 inches tall, they are safe to transplant to the final growing site.


(Apium graveolens)

Celery in oval frame on green background.
  • Order: Apiales
  • Family: Apiaceae
  • Growing Zones: 3 To 6
  • Plant Type: Annual, Herb, and Herbaceous Perennial

Growing a Celery From a Seedling

If you want to see your celery go through all the stages, you can start it off as a seed, grow it into a seedling, and transplant it to a garden or indoor container. Some gardeners opt to “harden” their seedlings by placing them outdoors for a few hours daily and reducing the water ration.

The seedlings will thrive when you transplant them when at least 2 inches tall and the outdoor temperatures are conducive. They can grow when the levels plummet to 50 degrees (F) at night but not below 40 degrees, or they will suffer bolting.

Planting Tips for Celery in Containers: Tips for Growing Celery in Containers

If you love having your plants in the house, like types of bonsai trees, indoors, you will enjoy growing your celery in beautiful pots inside. Besides, planters are more convenient since the celery is safe from diseases transmitted through open grounds, and you can move it around to provide conducive temperatures and sunlight.

Celery seedlings growing in container.

(Image: see-idea11)

Containers are also ideal for starting with seeds before transplanting the seedling outside.4 The perfect one should be at least 20 cm high and spacious enough to hold celeries 25 inches separate.

Also, avoid clay pots that dry quickly, depriving the crop of water, and go for plastic options.5

What Are the Best Containers for Growing Celery?

Celery is a water-hungry plant that thrives when the soil stays moist. The best planter should consider this and help the crop retain as much water as possible.

Plastic is widely known as the most suitable material for plants that need a lot of water. Unlike clay pots and porous bags, plastic is the most water retentive, and it helps that it is more portable and comes in various designs, including DIY options.

How To Regrow Celery

Regrowing celery is similar to planting green onions, where you can chop the base and use the scraps to provide a constant supply. You only have to place it inside a water jar and wait for the sprouts to appear.

However, the celery doesn’t thrive by being in the water forever. You may have to transplant it to a garden or a container with fertile soil to provide all the nutrients it needs.

Exposing the plant to water for extended periods can also cause rot, killing it in the process.

Where Does Celery Grow?

Farmers planted the first celery crops as swamp plants in the Mediterranean and Europe, and interestingly, it was grown for its medicinal properties, not as a vegetable. It now grows in the United States of America and various countries worldwide, primarily in temperate and cold regions.

Celery situated on dirt showing one of the places where does Celery grow.

(Image: Andreas Göllner12)

Most celery varieties grow best under USDA zones 2-10 throughout the country. It is known as a resilient biennial, but many grow it as an annual crop due to its edible leaves.

When To Plant Celery

Celery takes a long time to grow, explaining why it helps to start growing it indoors from seeds. You can grow it as a spring crop from seeds at least ten weeks before the last spring date, but if you want it as a fall crop, you can start creating the seedlings at least ten weeks before the first autumn frost date.

How Long It Takes To Grow Celery?

The time your celery grows depends on its variety and how well you care for it. However, on average, most take 3-4 months before they are ready for harvesting, making them one of the slowly growing vegetables, especially if starting from the seed.

Luckily, your patience will be worth it because, with proper care, you will reap tasty and crunchy celery. Many planters opt for planting at different times to ensure a steady all-year-round supply.

What Are the Recommended Types of Celery To Grow?

Celery can take two primary forms, trenching and self-blanching types.12 From the name, the Trenching Celery grows in trenches with soil mounds along the stems to create crunchy, whitish stems.

In contrast, the Self-Blanching form doesn’t need any aiding or extra steps to make it tasty.

You can choose the perfect celery from the available options, but gardeners prefer the Afina, Golden Self-Blanching, and Conquistador varieties. Afina grows impressively long and fast, reaching 30 inches high and taking a dark green color.

However, the Golden Self-Blanching grows dwarf, making it ideal for tiny gardens, while the Conquistador is a hardy type that survives water scarcity and sweltering temperatures.

Care and Maintenance of a Celery Garden

There are three primary ways to care for your celery. They need frequent watering to keep the stalks long and crunchy, fertile soil enriched with compost, and the temperature should remain cool.

Besides the three critical conditions, you can implement other things to keep your celery healthy. Like other vegetables, they need protection from weeds, especially since their roots are shallow.

Blanching is another specific care for celery because wrapping the stalks gives the plant a great taste.

What Are the Companion Plants for Growing Celery?

If planting celery in your garden, you can mix some companions to help repel pests and improve their flavor; the following are the top options.

#1: Mint

Tiny pests and large animals hate mint’s smell and will keep off your celery when it grows nearby.

Top shot of Mint growing in white pot.

(Image: congerdesign13)

Garden full of orange Marigold.

(Image: GM Rajib14)

#2: Marigold

Its potent scent is enough to repel pests, and they effectively trap slugs trying to attack.

#3: Nasturtiums

Their scent pushes away common celery pests.

Closeup of Nasturtium with its orange flowers.

(Image: Annette Meyer15)

Closeup of herbs, Basil, Thyme, and Rosemary.

(Image: tookapic16, Kerstin Riemer17, samsevents18)

#4: Basil, Thyme, and Rosemary

Not only will you plant herbs for your recipes, but their potent scent helps keep off insects.

#5: Cosmos

Planting these attractive flowers adds color to your garden and attracts natural pest predators, serving as a natural pest control.

Closeup of Cosmos flowers with its white petals and yellow center.

(Image: manseok_Kim19)

Growing a Celery From a Cutting in Water

Celery is one of the easiest vegetables to propagate at home since you only need a jar or glass of water and a cutting. If you have plants to grow celery in your pots and want to avoid growing from seeds, you can use your kitchen scraps instead.

You cut 2-3 inches of celery and place it facing up in a glass almost full of water. Moisture and sunlight are the key ingredients to help the stump germinate, and you should see shoots growing within a few days.

However, it is essential to note that celery cannot fully grow in water. If you want the best results, you must transplant the stump into a planter or garden, watering it and fertilizing the soil when necessary.6,7

Watering Needs for Celery Plants

Celery is a water-hungry vegetable, and it doesn’t help that it has shallow roots. It cannot survive scarcity because the roots cannot dig deeper into the soil for more moisture; therefore, it is best to provide more water and keep the soil moist.

Celery needs 1-2 inches of water every week based on the prevailing conditions (you will provide more water when the temperatures are too high). Otherwise, stress from lack of water interferes with the stalks’ form and flavor.

How Far Apart To Plant Celery

If you plant celery outside in your garden, you must consider the spacing to avoid overcrowding and help the stalks grow taller.

You can set the rows 2 feet away from each other and place individual plants at about a 12-inch distance.

A tight but not crowded planting keeps each plant safe while encouraging better growth.

How Much Sunlight Does Celery Need Each Day?

Like any other vegetable you plant at home, celery cannot survive without sunlight. The amount it needs, however, depends on the variety and several other factors, but generally, you are safer providing 6-8 hours of natural light daily.

The only limitation is that the crop loves the cold, meaning excessive heat can cause burning and change the taste.

Therefore, it is best to relocate your pot if the sun’s heat becomes unbearable, especially at noon.

What To Know When Harvesting Celery

Besides knowing how to grow celery and how to sow celery, it is equally important to understand how to harvest it, or you could kill it. You can harvest entire plants, but that is not advisable if you want to keep them growing.

Picking the whole plant will kill it but cutting the stalks you need will allow it to regrow. The goal is to harvest the outside stalks as you work your way in but use a saw-like knife.

The best part is that you can chop them whenever you need, but most planters wait until the stalks reach at least 6-8 inches long.8

When To Harvest Celery

Gardeners harvest their crops as soon as they are tall enough, preferably 6-8 inches tall and 3 inches wide.

There is no specific time to reap, but the key is to do it safely to avoid killing the plant because you want it to keep growing.

Closeup of Celery growing on dirt with its stalks.

(Image: Ulrike Leone21)

The best way is to chop the stalks one at a time from the outside, working your way inwards.

The general rule is that the darker the stems, the more nutritious it is, and the inner parts tend to be softer and tastier when raw.

How To Store Celery

Aside from knowing how to grow celery, knowing how to store it properly is important.

Most people opt to dry their celery or freeze it by cutting them into ½ inch pieces and placing them in bags inside the freezer.9 If you want it to last longer in the fridge, you should store it with the leaves intact; otherwise, celery without leaves will only last about two weeks.

And, of course, you can simply use it as soon as you harvest it.

Common Pests of the Celery

The most common pests to watch for when growing celery include Earwigs, Flea Beetles, and Snails.10 The insects are infamous for feeding on stalks, leaving behind several tiny holes and sometimes eating away seedlings.

Closeup of Earwig on leaf.

(Image: francok3520)

Infestation by these insects and mollusks renders the celery unusable, and it is crucial to stop them before they cause more damage.

How To Stop Celery Disease

You can keep celery diseases at bay by watering the plant properly and providing the necessary nutrients by adding balanced fertilizers. Rotting and yellowing are common in these crops, and it is best to avoid over-watering and splashing the soil onto the stalks.

Some diseases are from nutrient deficiencies, but supplementing the soil with what it needs prevents further spreading. If a few plants are infected, it is best to remove the affected parts or the entire plant and burn them to avoid further spreading.

How To Grow Celery From Stump or Bottoms

You mostly grow food from seeds, but unique vegetables like tubers and bulbs can regrow from their stumps. This process is called Vegetative Propagation, and celery is a perfect example of a plant that grows from cuttings.

You can use your kitchen scraps to regrow food like garlic, basil, beets, and sweet potatoes. For celery, you chop the bottom two or three inches and place it in a water jar.

Roots and shoots will start popping from the cutting, making it the perfect time to transplant to your garden or indoor planter.

What Are the Best Growing Conditions for Celery?

Celery needs three primary conditions to grow. It needs frequent watering, given its shallow roots, but the soil should not be soggy, or it will rot.

It also thrives when the soil is fertile and fortified with compost or other supplements and prefers growing in cool conditions.

What Are the Steps To Follow When Making Homemade Celery Salt?

Making homemade celery salt requires three main ingredients, celery seeds, table salt, and uncooked white rice. Grind the seeds and salt into a fine powder, place the mixture into a glass jar with white rice, cover, and store.

The rice at the bottom will draw in moisture and prevent clumping.

Natural Pest Control for Celery

You can remove common pests like aphids from your celery biologically by introducing their predators to your crops. These creatures feed on the insects eating your plants, reducing their population and chasing the rest away.

Parasitic Wasps, Lady Beetles, and Lacewings are the most popular predatory insects that farmers use on their crops.11

Side shot of Lacewing on a leaf.

(Image: artsehn22)

Celery is not a needy or demanding plant to grow. You can do it as a fun family activity as you regrow and transplant them in your garden. The crop can start with seeds indoors or cutting and scraping from your kitchen.

You can cut the bottom part and place it in water for a few days, waiting for the shoots to grow before you can transplant it into your garden or container. If growing it indoors, ensure that you water it frequently and place it near a window for sunlight access.

Remember that your celery needs a lot of water, fertile soil, and a cool environment to grow. Learning all the tips and tricks of how to grow celery ensures that you harvest tall, nutritious, crunchy, and tasty stalks.

Frequently Asked Questions About How To Grow Celery

How Does Celery Grow?

Celery can grow from seeds, like any other plant, but you can also transplant or regrow it from cuttings. It also doesn’t extend below the ground like tubers, given its shallow roots, but gardeners plant it for its tasty stalks.

How Long Does It Take Celery To Grow?

Celery is widely known for taking longer to grow, unlike other vegetables. Depending on the variety and how well you care for your plant, the celery can take 3-4 months from planting, after which it will be tall enough for harvesting at 6-8 inches long.

What Are the Steps on How To Grow Brussel Sprouts?

You can grow Brussel sprouts from seeds or transplants, but they are usually transplanted from one seed bed to another for better growth. You can plant them at least six weeks before your expected frost date and place them 3-4 inches away under full sun and in fertile soil.

What Are the Steps on How To Grow Carrots?

How to grow carrots is like potatoes but one at a time, not as multiple tubers. Their seeds are too tiny and lightweight, and it is best to sow them into the final plating site 3-4 inches apart instead of transplanting them to guarantee better growth.

What Are the Steps on How To Grow Green Onions?

You can start the green onions from seeds indoors or plant them directly into the ground from seedlings. Plant the seeds ¼ inches apart, water and care for them until they grow, thinning while consuming the chopped stalks.

What Are the Steps on How To Grow Rice?

Unlike other grains, rice is a semi-aquatic plant that loves soggy and warm conditions. Therefore, it is best to plant it only when you are sure to provide sufficient water and heavy silt soil and live in a warm region.

What Are the Steps on How To Grow Potatoes?

You can plant potatoes in your backyard garden or indoors in a planter, provided it is deep and wide enough to allow the root tubers to grow. Knowing how to grow potatoes in warm and fertile soil as well as loose soil that can accommodate them will prevent them to grow small and out of shape.


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