Green Gold Guide to Growing Your Wasabi Empire

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growing green gold wasabi on the Wasabi Farm,Nagano,Japan

In recent years, the demand for fresh and authentic wasabi has been steadily rising, driven by the growing interest in Japanese cuisine and gourmet foods. As a result, more enthusiasts are considering cultivating their green gold wasabi plants to enjoy this pungent delicacy at its freshest. In this guide, we will explore the process of purchasing fresh wasabi rhizomes and provide step-by-step instructions on how to cultivate your own wasabi farm.

Understanding Wasabi

Wasabia, also known as Japanese horseradish, is a plant native to Japan. It belongs to the Brassicaceae family, which includes cabbage, mustard, and horseradish. The most sought-after part of the wasabi plant is its rhizome, a thick stem-like structure that grows underground. When grated, the rhizome releases a pungent aroma and spicy flavour that is distinctively different from other forms of horseradish.

Purchasing Fresh Wasabi Rhizomes

Before embarking on your wasabi farming journey, sourcing high-quality rhizomes from reputable suppliers is essential. Freshness is key when it comes to wasabi rhizomes, as they tend to lose their potency and flavour over time. Look for suppliers who specialise in providing fresh wasabi rhizomes and ensure that they are sourced from reliable sources.

When purchasing wasabi rhizomes, consider the following factors:

  • Freshness: Choose firm, plump rhizomes and free from blemishes or soft spots. Avoid rhizomes that appear dry or shrivelled, as they may be past their prime.
  • Size: Select rhizomes that are suitable for planting. Larger rhizomes tend to produce more substantial plants and higher yields.
  • Variety: Different varieties of wasabi are available, each with its unique flavour profile and growing requirements. Research the varieties offered by the supplier and choose one that suits your preferences and growing conditions.
  • Organic Certification: If possible, opt for organic wasabi rhizomes to ensure that they are free from pesticides and harmful chemicals.

Once you have selected your wasabi rhizomes, it’s time to prepare for the cultivation process.

Cultivating Your Own Green Gold Wasabi Plants

Growing wasabi plants requires careful attention to detail and adherence to specific growing conditions. While it can be challenging, the rewards of cultivating your own wasabi farm are well worth the effort. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you get started:

Choose the Right Location

Wasabi plants thrive in cool, shaded areas with plenty of moisture. Ideally, choose a location with dappled sunlight or partial shade, such as under the canopy of trees or in a greenhouse. Ensure that the soil is well-draining and rich in organic matter.

Prepare the Soil

Before planting, amend the soil with compost or well-rotted manure to improve its fertility and drainage. Wasabi plants prefer slightly acidic soil with a pH range of 6.0 to 6.5. Conduct a soil test to determine the pH of your soil and make any necessary adjustments.


Plant the wasabi rhizomes horizontally in shallow trenches, with the top of the rhizome just below the soil surface. Space the rhizomes at least 12 inches apart to allow room for growth. Water the rhizomes thoroughly after planting to settle the soil and provide moisture.


Keep the soil consistently moist but not waterlogged. Wasabi plants require regular watering, especially during dry periods or hot weather. Mulch around the base of the plants to help retain moisture and suppress weeds.

Temperature and Humidity

To mimic the wasabi plants’ natural habitat, maintain a cool and humid environment around them. Provide adequate ventilation to prevent the buildup of humidity, which can lead to fungal diseases.


Fertilise the wasabi plants regularly with a balanced fertiliser to promote healthy growth and development. Avoid using high-nitrogen fertilisers, as they can encourage excessive leafy growth at the expense of rhizome formation.

Pest and Disease Management

Monitor the plants regularly for signs of pests or diseases, such as aphids, slugs, or fungal infections. Remove any affected plants or parts immediately to prevent the spread of the infestation. To manage pest populations, consider using natural pest control methods, such as companion planting or beneficial insects.


Wasabi plants typically take 18 to 24 months to reach maturity and produce green gold rhizomes ready for harvest. Harvest the rhizomes carefully by digging them up with a garden fork or shovel, not damaging the roots or surrounding plants. Wash the harvested rhizomes thoroughly to remove any soil or debris before using or storing them.


Cultivating your own wasabi farm is a rewarding and fulfilling experience that allows you to enjoy fresh and authentic wasabi at its peak flavour and potency. By following the steps outlined in this guide and investing time and effort into proper cultivation practices, you can successfully grow your own green gold wasabi plants and savour the unique taste of this prized Japanese delicacy.

Remember to start with high-quality rhizomes from reputable suppliers, choose the right growing location, and provide proper care and maintenance throughout the growing season. With dedication and patience, you can create a thriving wasabi farm and delight in the fruits of your labour for years to come.

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This guide provides aspiring wasabi farmers with the essential information needed to start their own cultivation journey, from purchasing fresh rhizomes to harvesting and enjoying the fruits of their labour.

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