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How To Grow Chives in Water? (Explained)

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Last updated on September 26th, 2022 at 11:10 am

Although all plants need water to grow, it is scarce for plants to grow in water. The reason is that excess water can as well make your plant rot and die.

However, the case is different for perennial herbs since many grow and survive in water for several months.

Chives are members of the onion family that can thrive in different kinds of climates. The best variety of chives to grow in water is garlic chives. Most people take to growing them in the soil, but it is possible and easy also to grow them in water.

Still, you will need proper orientation before you can grow chives in water successfully. Not to worry though, that is the purpose of this article.

Here are some tips that will help you grow Chives successfully in water.

  • Get a piece of fresh chive stem from any herb store. Make sure the chive stem is a very fresh and healthy one.
  • Do not peel any part of the stem. It should be left to remain like that. Then, place the stem in wet clothing and leave it for two days in a hot location. Within this period, it should have sprouted.
  • You will also need a shallow glass jar or container. You can also go to a herb store and ask for a suitable jar for cultivating your herb plants in water.
  • Make sure your jar or container is transparent. This feature enables you to monitor your chive plant and also allows light to penetrate.
  • Fill the jar up to 70% of its size with good water. Do not fill to the brim.
  • Put the fragment of chive you got from the store into the jar of water
  • Ensure you do not submerge the entire fragment to prevent it from going rotten.
  • Place the jar of chive on a windowsill.
  • Change your water every few days. This action is essential for keeping your plant in good health.
  • If it begins to look scrappy, trim the ends of the stem. It should always be organized as it helps boost the quality of your herb plant.
  • Make sure your jar of chive plant gets enough sunlight, about eight (8) to twelve (12) hours of sunlight daily, which explains why you should keep it on a windowsill.

These are the essential tips you need in growing your chive plant in water. After some time of its cultivation in water, it will begin to form roots and green shoots. You will start to notice this outgrowth a week after your cultivation.

In addition, seeds can also be used to cultivate chives in water. However, it is very complicated and time-consuming. Therefore, I recommend growing from cuttings.

Can You Keep Chives In Water?

Chives are water-friendly perennial herbs. They grow green and bloom when subjected to water and just the right amount of sunlight. However, when it comes to keeping or storing your chive plant, you will have to reconsider keeping it in water.

You can keep your chives in water. But only for a few days after you have harvested it. Keeping it in water for a very long period will only make it weak and wither.

When you plan on keeping your chive plant for an extended period, you should either leave it to continue growing while you make use of it directly.

Since it is a perennial herb, you can have it for as long as you want. It can stay alive for over three (3) to four (4) years. Another very effective way of keeping your chives is by stocking them in a refrigerator.

Doing this will make it freeze and maintain its green pigment and flavor for as long as you wish, provided your freezer keeps running.

Ensure you finely cut your chive into pieces and wash them before freezing.

Do Chives Need a Lot of Water?

Chives need a great deal of water that should go as deep as six (6) inches into the soil once or twice every week. The watering depends on how dry your location is or the period of cultivation. Compared to most herbs, this is a lot of water.

Chives are not picky when it comes to growing conditions. Therefore, it is very accurate that they are hardy perennials and need direct full sun. However, note that they can be planted and grown in relatively any climatic condition, winter or summer.

The sun helps keep the leaves of chives bright green and intensifies the plant’s flavor. However, it would help if you also focused on the soil on which your herb plant is standing.

Make it a duty to ensure your soil is kept moist and does not stay dry. At least for the period before it becomes fit.

How Long Does It Take to Grow Chives Hydroponically?

The growth time range of chives is not affected by the hydroponic medium you are using in your cultivation. A vertical tower system is a preferred medium to adopt in all aspects of your cultivation.

It is well designed to house more than three (3) herb plants. Other mediums like; Ebb and flow system, floating raft system, and Nutrient film system are challenging to cope with. However, despite the difficulties and issues, they grow correctly and thrive when cultivated in the right way.

The exact time for the cuttings in the vertical tower system is also applicable for the Ebb and flow system, floating raft, and nutrient flow system. But an unconducive growing environment and poor care can alter this no matter the hydroponic system adopted.

It takes a chive slightly above one (1) week to begin to form roots and leaves. If it were in the soil, I would say “germinate.” But it takes it three (3) to four (4) weeks to mature. So here is a faster growth rate compared to when cultivated in soil.

Note this; your chive shouldn’t be harvested immediately it matures. Instead, it should be left for more weeks to build its roots and make it firm enough to support future harvest. The plant must be established before you can begin to harvest your chives.


Chives are the most accessible perennial herb to grow and thrive in water. Since hydroponic cultivation is not our standard method of planting, we should follow the tips given to get the best result.

They have a rapid growth rate if planted in water which gives them an edge over soil-based cultivation.

Chive being hydroponic is still a sun-loving perennial. So it should be kept where it can receive about eight (8) to twelve (12) hours of sun daily.

Light from the sun dramatically determines how fresh your leaves will be and improves your plant’s flavor.

Once your plant is matured enough, you can begin to harvest at an interval of three (3) to six (6) weeks depending on climatic conditions.

You can as well preserve them. For short-term storage, keep them in a moist medium but freeze them if storage is long-term.

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