TikTok-famous gardener ‘Mama Judy’ gave us her best plant-growing tips

Mama Judy has been gardening longer than many of her followers have been alive.

Her internet-famous garden, which has drawn more than 430,000 followers on TikTok, is now a whopping 25 years old.

“I started gardening 25 years ago,” Mama Judy, whose real name is Judy Bao, told In The Know. “I grow everything, like bok choy, peppers, green onions, bananas — like, everything.”

She’s not exaggerating. Her sprawling, lush Florida garden is one of the reasons behind her popularity. Somehow, Mama Judy manages to keep up with a massive range of plants — from dragonfruit and mangos to desert roses and corn.


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Ultimately, though, it seems to be Mama Judy’s deep, sprawling knowledge that has helped her become so popular. The majority of her videos, which are usually narrated by her son, are educational.

The gardening veteran teaches TikTokers how to start gardens and how to decorate them. She also teaches the secrets behind her love of “replanting,” or growing plants from produce she’s bought at the grocery store.

So for those looking to get into gardening — or to improve their already-existent plant collection — here are a few of Mama Judy’s most popular tips.

How to ‘replant’ fruits and vegetables

As it turns out, you can replant a lot of the produce you buy at the store. Mama Judy has countless videos showing how to turn celery, lettuce and onions and more into lush, vibrant new plants.

Take celery, for example. In one of her most viral videos, Mama Judy replants the stems of some store-bought celery — along with plenty of water and an egg. Four weeks later, she has fully formed stalks.


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How to grow seeds in a plastic bottle

Mama Judy’s garden is full of experiments. In a particularly interesting one, she shows TikTok how to grow seeds inside a plastic water bottle.

The simple process involves using the top of the water bottle as a sort of support system — then, adding a straw to help the seedling get air and water. It’s easy, convenient and of course, sustainable too.


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How to germinate seeds

Germinating seeds is a crucial process that any gardener could benefit from improving. In one of her instructional clips, Mama Judy wets a paper towel then removes the seeds from a bell pepper.

She then places the seeds on the paper towel, tops it with a strip of saran wrap and rolls the whole thing up. Then, she puts the roll inside a recycled water bottle for one week.

There are plenty of other ways to germinate seeds, of course, but Mama Judy’s is fun, simple and creative.


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