Let’s Talk About Microgreens!
Last week I talked about my favorite breakfast for my busy mornings. This week I’m going to dive into another part of my daily routine; microgreens. Even if you are new to gardening, microgreens are a perfect way to learn about the life of seeds. They are exceptionally easy to grow and they don’t require a lot of maintenance. There are several ways that you can grow simple microgreens and I’ll be sharing some of my favorite articles with you. Let’s get started!
What are Microgreens?
This first article comes from Gardening Channel, Growing Microgreens 101.
Microgreens should not be confused with sprouts, it’s two different processes. With sprouts the main focus is developing the root and stem. This is accomplished by soaking the seeds in water, not soil. Whereas with microgreens, the focus is just on the natural development of the stem and leaves, with soil. Both are great and tasty but todays focus is just on microgreens.
Gardening Channel has great information about the benefits of microgreens. They contain nutrients such as Vitamin E, Vitamin K, Vitamin C, and Beta-Carotene to name just a few. Microgreens have been shown to contain levels of key nutrients 40 times higher, than in their mature state. Maybe we should start telling our kids to eat more microgreens!
What Seeds Can I Grow?
There are a ton of great choices for microgreens and it’s really up to your personal taste. Here’s a breakdown of some common microgreens and their flavor profile.
- Clover- Mild and nutty, clover is a great neutral microgreen
- Broccoli- A little grassy, goes well with cheese and nuts
- Arugala- Adds a nice peppery, tangy spice to the dish
- Basil- Excellent for pasta dishes or even pesto
- Kale- Slight bitterness but great for sauces
- Pea- Goes well with sweet or savory salads
Here are a few more descriptions for you: 18 common microgreens
Where Do I buy seeds?
If you are starting out small it’s really easy to buy some of your favorite varieties at your local store. I started out with mustard and clover that I bought at Home Depot. Tip: Make sure that you buy seeds from a company you trust. I bought my packets from Burpee which is a brand I personally love. You just want to make sure that the company you buy from, doesn’t use any chemicals or coatings on their seeds. Once you decide on growing them on a weekly basis, it might be time to upgrade to larger packets. You can find some great non-gmo microgreen seeds on Amazon here. These will save you time and money in the long run.
How Do I Grow Them?
I know fancy restaurants make microgreens seem like rocket science, but they are actually really easy to grow! I personally like to buy a small bag of coconut coir and use 4oz mason jars. The small jars are perfect for my window sill and they are just the right size for lunch!
Here are some other great ideas you can play around with:
- Tea Cups
- Aluminum Foil Pans
- Egg Cartons
- Microgreen Kits
- Rotisserrie Chicken Container
- Anything that can keep a little soil in it will be perfect.
Ok, Now What?
Here’s a great article from Hearth & Vine showing how to grow your microgreens. Growing Microgreens.
Basically you only need 3 things: water, soil and light. With the jars I use, I put about a half inch of coconut coir on the bottom. Then I use my handy dandy spray bottle to mist the soil, you want it damp but not soggy. I like using the clear jars because I can see if I added too much water. Then sprinkle a generous amount of seeds on top, I do about 1 teaspoon for my jars.
You want the seeds to be in one even layer, on the whole surface of your container. Since they won’t be growing to their mature size you want them all clustered nice and close to each other. Put some soil over the top like a nice blanket. Then place in a warm area, on a window sill or under artificial lights.
You’ll want to spray them about once a day when they start to look dry. After a few days you’ll see them start to sprout. Some seeds take longer than others so be patient. Most of the time it takes up to 14 days until they’re ready to be harvested.
Since it may take up to 2 weeks, I like to plant a new batch every 2 or 3 days depending on how often you’ll eat them. That way once the first one is ready, the cycle will keep going and I’ll have fresh microgreens every few days! You can play with different combinations and flavors until you find something you enjoy. Now that you’ve got all of these resources, go try it for yourself and see how easy it is. Don’t forget to have fun with it, try new seeds, and find what you like!
Also don’t forget to like and share! Your support means a lot to me!
Stay tuned next week for a guide on Sprouts and then I’ll be whipping up a few recipes for you guys as well!
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