Now that you’ve entered the world of microgreens you probably figured out they can be grown (almost) everywhere. They grow fast, and are full of healthy enzymes. Most of microgreens will grow within one to four weeks. Basically, with a little bit of effort you can have your own little indoor farm – although microgreens can grow both indoors and outdoors. In this article we will take a look into different types of growing microgreens.
First, you should know there are many types of commercially available microgreens – there are more than 100 varieties and types of microgreens. Some microgreens differ in taste, others in size, some you can grow indoor and some outdoor. Some microgreens taste mild, others might be spicy or bitter; but most of them taste as their mature versions. Some types are very easy to grow, other require more of your input. It is up to you what kind of microgreens you want to grow. We are using an indoor system and currently are growing more then 50 varieties. With this method, we can grow microgreens all year around, and the conditions (Temperature, humidity) can be controlled. With this, we can plan more precisely; when do we need to soak and sow microgreens, so they will be ready for delivery in the coming weeks. Otherwise it can be very stressful, if you don’t know, how many days they need to grow.
Growing microgreens indoor
Microgreens are delicate when it comes to conditions they grow in. That’s why indoor microgreens that you can grow in your apartment or a greenhouse are the easiest to grow. Once you found your spot in your apartment or a house, you should know you must avoid direct sunlight. Microgreens adore water so that is something you should always keep in mind, essentially – to not forget to water them. The best temperature to grow microgreens is room temperature so around 20-25 degrees (68-77 Fahrenheit) and with 50-60 % humidity. Since those factors vary from places to places you can consider buying a dehumidifier or air conditioner to control the environment where microgreens are growing. Therefore it is easier to control those factors when you grow indoors microgreens. In general, growing microgreens indoor gives you more control over the growing environment.
Me in the growing area.
Growing microgreens outdoor might be more challenging since microgreens are fragile when it comes to garden pest or a harsh climate. Of course, when growing microgreens outdoor, you have to know that the time you have to grow microgreens is limited. From late spring to early autumn is perfect for growing microgreens with some exceptions with storms in the summertime.
Talking about a taste of outdoor microgreens, they probably won’t be as juicy as the indoor microgreens. Growing microgreens in a greenhouse is similar as growing indoors. The main difference is the sunlight. When microgreens are growing in a greenhouse they receive a natural sunlight therefore they will grow upright in one direction which will be easier later on when you will harvest them. Another benefit here is also free natural light, which is more quality than artificial light. Indoor microgreens are worry-free when we talk about pest problems, while this is not the case for the outdoors. There will be many animals interested in your microgreens as worms, bugs and ants. Also outdoor soil (if you sow them directly on field) is different from the one in a potting mix you use for the indoor growing microgreens. Therefore microgreens will grow a few days slower than in a potting mix. A potting soil might be easier and more suitable since it is mostly made out of compost and peat moss, which does not have any weed seeds.
Many growers use greenhouses for their microgreen production. It’s more efficient, if you live in a warmer climate (or more stable climate), otherwise, you will need to heat your greenhouse. But on the other hand, you shouldn’t be worried about light, because, with this method, there will be plenty of day-light. Just be careful, that your micros don’t lengthen too much (in search of light – that’s why it’s better to grow them flat (on tables for example) than on racks.
Growing in greenhouse.
Which microgreen seeds work best?
Simply put the ones, that suit you and your taste the best. But the most common microgreens people like to start with are: mustard, sunflower, cress, pea or broccoli. You will see in future post how many types of microgreens there are available! Basically, microgreens can be grown from almost any kind of vegetable seed. Each of them have their own special requirements. Down below there are just a few microgreens, which are easy to grow and perfect for beginners:
As its mature version of this plant, broccoli microgreens are also full of minerals, vitamin C and vitamin A and is high in iron. Because of the sulforaphane in the broccoli you would like to avoid cooking broccoli microgreens and rather eat it raw, because sulforaphane is sensitive to heat. What sulforaphane is good for? Well it helps with preventing cancer, aging, heart disease and also mortality. It is our favorite as well of our children to eat, because the taste is very mild, earthy.
This is a great microgreen for beginners. They are very easy to grow; you can even grow them on a paper towel. And it is super fast (at room temperature), you can grow it in just 4-5 days. Very funny story about microcress is that, many chefs here in Slovenia are saying to all kind of microgreens just simple cress. ‘Oh, the man with cresses is coming!’, they say, when Boštjan delivers them our beautiful microgreens.
Sunflower microgreens need to be pre-soaked for 12 hours to maximize the germination rate. If doing this, your success rate in growing them is much higher. Don’t be bothered with hulls, which stick to the plants. With some extra grown days, they fall off by themselves. And the taste is extraordinary. It’s the same as sunflower seeds. Yummy. We write more on sunflowers in this blog post.
Spice lovers behold! To add some zest to your dish, mustard will soon become your favorite microgreens. You will be surprised how strong their taste is, just like the mature version. Also after cooking them, the taste will still stay. But we recommend to eat them raw. Mustard microgreens also grown very fast. In one week you will have this super power tasty micros ready.
Beautiful tendrils, gives this sort a special place, when growing microgrees. The taste is just the same as grains of peas. Although it’s best to eat raw microgreens, this one wouldn’t resent to you, if you will give them a little bit of stir-fry. Risottos will love micropeas. Bonus points go to harvesting, because if cut above the first true leaves, you will get the second batch of lovely microgreens. But don’t forget to water them on a daily basis.
Want to learn more?
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