It is that time of year again. The ginger tops are drying and it is time to harvest. I pulled up some ginger yesterday from the 25 gallon pot. I am going to try to wait another couple of weeks to pull the rest. My other three pots are blooming and will be close behind.
Although I can start breaking off ginger once they are big enough (usually about 5 months of growing), I have been preserving ginger for the last two years in dry sherry. I just get a clean jar and fill it with thumb sized pieces of scraped ginger root and cover with dry sherry. I have some that are still good from 2 years ago. It can also be stored in the freezer, but it does dry out. I will put the seed pieces I plan to grow in a bucket with a little bit of peat moss and just keep them in the shade and just damp to keep them from drying out. Around March or April they should be ready to plant out again.
Some people recommend starting with new seed pieces every year and not saving any just in case of diseases. I grow mine in containers in potting soil, and the plants look healthy so I do keep some pieces for growing. It has to be in a container for me because ginger is not only intolerant of viruses, it also is not nematode resistant, so I have to keep it isolated from the soil in my yard. I haven't noticed nematodes in my yard, but then I plant mostly nematode resistant varieties or plant things like heirloom tomatoes in containers instead of in the ground.