One of the latest healthy lifestyle trends is to eat young sprouts of various crops with ordinary food. They have a positive effect on the body: for example, they increase immunity and improve the condition of the skin and hair. Sprouted plants can be bought at the supermarket or planted at home, which is much cheaper. Therefore, we tell you how to grow microgreens at home.
Gave a short instruction in the video
All about growing your own microgreens
What it is
Benefits of home sprouting
— in the ground
— on cotton wool
— On the paper
— In the bank
What is microgreen
Microgreens are commonly referred to as plant sprouts that emerge from the ground and can be eaten. Greens are used for food when it has time to release cotyledon and true leaves. Such plants are rich in a huge amount of useful elements, for example, they contain twenty times more vitamins and minerals than in fully grown sprouts. They contain a large amount of chlorophyll, vegetable protein and essential oils. Therefore, they can affect the immune system and overall health of a person.
Greens are very popular among people who lead a healthy lifestyle. Usually they eat sprouts of vegetable and cereal crops: broccoli, basil, arugula, radish, peas, cilantro, wheat, buckwheat, cabbage and other species. However, plants are valued not only for their health benefits, but also for the unusual and interesting flavors they add to various dishes. They are used as a side dish for meat, garnished with appetizers, added to salads and smoothies as a superfood.
You can find germinated crops in a form prepared for consumption in supermarkets, in stores with organic products and vegetables. However, it is much easier to plant microgreens at home on your own.
Benefits of home sprouting
- Growing sprouts at home is much cheaper than buying ready-made ones in the store.
- You can eat plants right from the garden. In the store, they can be stored for a long time in the warehouse, so they lose their useful qualities.
- Greens rise on 7-14 days — the process is very fast. And a week after the harvest of the first crop, the next one will grow.
- You can easily control the quality of all planting materials: the seeds themselves, soil or substrate, water. As a result, you will get an environmentally friendly crop.
- For cultivation, special containers, lamps for lighting, as well as fertilizers and protective agents are not needed.
- In one container, you can simultaneously grow a mix of different crops. The main thing is to choose species that sprout at the same time.
How to choose seeds
To get high-quality greens, you need to choose good seeds for seedlings. They don’t have to be processed. The most useful sprouts are obtained from environmentally friendly seeds that do not contain pesticides.
If you are a vegetable grower and grow beets, radishes and other crops every year, then most likely you already have suitable seeds. If there are none, then you can purchase the necessary planting material at a garden store. Take only fresh seeds and carefully study what is written on the package before buying.
There are also ready-made germination kits. If you are planting plants for the first time, you can try to start with this.
How to plant microgreens at home
It is not difficult to grow microgreens yourself, as it is right, the first harvest can be obtained in 5-15 days, depending on the crop. It does not require special gardening skills. Therefore, we tell you what microgreens can be grown on.
in the ground
Planting microgreens in the ground is the easiest and most common method. For him, you need to stock up on any container. You can buy special sprouting trays or take the usual plastic ones that you have at home. It is necessary to fill them with soil — a universal purchased one, which is usually used for seedlings, is suitable. The soil for floriculture should not be taken, as chemicals are added to it, they can negatively affect microgreens. You can purchase a special substrate, such as peat or coconut. Do not put a lot of earth in the container, a layer of 3-4 cm is enough. Drainage holes do not need to be made.
Seeds should be prepared before planting: soak for a certain period for faster germination. It depends on the culture you choose. For example, sunflower or beets should be put in water for 8-12 hours, peas — for 12-18, and soaking for 20 minutes is enough for watercress. If you need to keep the seeds in water for a long time, then you can leave them overnight, and start planting in the morning.
Before placing the seeds in the soil, it needs to be slightly moistened. Then put seeds in it. To get dense seedlings, it is better to put the seeds in large quantities, but evenly and not very close to each other. Then moisten them with a spray bottle and sprinkle with a small amount of soil. Then cover the container with plastic wrap, a regular bag or glass — the main thing is that they are transparent and transmit light well. The coating will create a greenhouse effect inside.
Next, the containers must be placed on a well-lit windowsill. As soon as the first shoots hatch, the coating is removed. The scheme for caring for plants is as follows: they need to be watered every 2-3 days. It is better to do this with a spray bottle so as not to fill them with water. Plants can most often be eaten after the appearance of two cotyledon leaves. Or wait for a couple of real leaves and then use them for food. Grown and cut greens are stored in the refrigerator, where it remains fresh for about 7 days.
On cotton wool
Another effective way is to grow microgreens at home without land. For example, for sowing, you can use ordinary cotton wool or cotton pads, which are almost always at home. Seeds, as in the case of soil, need to be prepared: soak in water in advance. During this time, they should swell.
Cotton wool should be laid out in containers to protect other surfaces from moisture. Then thoroughly moisten the material. Spread the seeds evenly over it. Then covered with a layer of transparent material, for example, a film. Containers with cotton wool are placed on the windowsill and waiting for the first shoots to appear. After that, the protective shelter is removed and the sprouts are sprayed every two days.
On the paper
Instead of cotton wool, you can use paper: paper towels or even toilet paper will do. The material must be placed in a pallet or any other container, then wet it well. However, there should not be too much water, it is impossible for the seeds to float in it.
Prepared and swollen seeds are evenly laid out on the moistened material. Cover with foil. It is important to monitor the moisture content of the paper. Once every few days, it should be moistened with sprays. When the shoots hatch, the shelter is removed and the plantings are regularly moistened with a spray bottle.
In the bank
For germination, you will need a regular glass jar. It must be thoroughly washed and dried well. Put the seeds in it and fill them with a little water. The jar must be covered with gauze or any other mesh material. Firmly fix it on the neck, you can do this with the help of stationery gum.
When the seeds swell and begin to germinate, the water must be drained. Seeds must be washed under water. You can do this without removing the gauze. After that, the jar is turned upside down and placed on a pallet. It is important that it is at an angle of 30 degrees — this is how excess water drains out of it. Once every 2-3 days, microgreens are washed under water. Then put the jar upside down again. Be careful: slime can form on the greens. If washing every few days does not help, it is better to wash it every day.
If you grow greens regularly, you can purchase special jars. They differ from the usual ones in that they have a built-in durable mesh. In this case, you do not have to use a new gauze each time.