5 best hydroponic microgreens to grow at home

What are microgreens?

You may be asking yourself what exactly is a microgreen? A microgreen is a young vegetable grain that is used both as a visual and flavor component or ingredients primarily in fine dining restaurants. They could be used in your salads, burger toppings, chili’s, soups, tacos, flatbreads, or is a garnish to enhance the look of your dish. And did you know that microgreens have up to 40 times more vital nutrients than their mature counterparts? Delicious and nutritious. Microgreens are packed with nutrients and they’re super easy to grow. I’m just surprised not very many people actually grow microgreens in their house. They’re very easy to grow and they’re delicious in salads. The seeds that I like to use are by Sprout House. These are 100% organic seeds and they have a very high germination rate. I’ve been using these seeds for quite few years and I swear to buy them. I would not recommend anything to you that I haven’t personally used and I haven’t personally tested. So, I’ve got all five of these and I’m ready to grow microgreens. The growing medium I used to grow my microgreens is coconut coir. Coconut coir is free of pests and bugs and also retains moisture very well. Pre-moist in the growing medium to avoid any expansion or contraction after planting. Now, let’s cover those top five microgreens.

1. Sunflower microgreens

Sunflower microgreens are the most popular microgreens in the market. First, start with some sunflower seeds. Sunflower seeds are quite large in size as compared to other microgreens. Add the sunflower seeds to a glass or a container and then add water to soak the seeds for 24 hours. After 24 hours, the seeds are well hydrated. Add the seeds on top of the growing medium, spread the seeds evenly with hands throughout the container. Flatten out the surface with a piece of wood. Do not cover the seeds with soil, just place another container on top of the seeds to block out the seeds and put some weight on top. It is very important to add weight on top so that the roots penetrate deep into the growing medium and the microgreens develop straight and tall. After 2 days which is three days from the start, uncover the container and the sunflower seeds develop shoots. Keep watering every other day with a spray bottle. After another two days, the shoots are about an inch tall. The container is growing very beautifully. Some uneven growth of sunflower is common. There is absolutely no mold in this container and it is all because of coconut coir that retains moisture and absorbs any extra water and in turns prevents mold from growing. Place the container near an airflow or a draft from AC or heat vent. Proper air flow prevents mold as well. After another two days, the shoots are about two to three inches tall. After another three days, the shoots are four inches tall and ready to harvest. The growth is straight, smooth, and healthy. Harvests the shoots with scissors or knife. Take the top three inches of shoots when harvesting. Look at these beautiful shoots. I’m going to chop these up and add them to my salad.  

2. Pea shoot microgreens

Pea shoot microgreens are the second most popular microgreens right after sunflower microgreens and they are by far the easiest microgreens to grow. If you want to get into growing microgreens, you should start with pea shoots. First, start with some pea seeds. Pea seeds are quite large in size as compared to other microgreens. Add the pea seeds to a glass or a container and then add water to soak the seeds for 24 hours. After 24 hours, the seeds are well hydrated. Add the seeds on top of the growing medium, spread the seeds evenly with hands throughout the container. At this point, you can either add more growing medium on top of the seeds to cover and block out the seeds or you can use another plastic container on top of the seeds to block out the seeds as well. I choose to cover my pea seeds with growing medium and then flatten out the surface with a piece of wood. Covering the seeds with growing medium works really well with pea seeds. However, this is not true with other microgreens. It’s better to block out other microgreens with another flat or container. After planting, water the container one more time. After two days, the pea seeds will start to develop shoots. Keep watering every other day with a spray bottle. After another two days, shoots are about an inch tall. After another two days, the shoots are about two to three inches tall. Pea shoots are very easy to grow and unlike sunflower microgreens, pea shoots are forgivable if you make few mistakes. Pea shoots are not very particular about block out and applying a weight on top when growing, although these practices help to have a uniform and consistent harvest. After another three days, the shoots are about five to six inches tall and ready to harvest. The growth is straight, smooth, and healthy. Harvest the shoots with scissors or knife. Take about four inches of shoots when harvesting.

3. Radish microgreens

photo: myecobin

Number three, radish microgreens. Radish microgreens are the fastest growing microgreens of all. Radish seeds are very small in size. It is very easy to plant a lot of these seeds so be careful when planting. You do not have to pre-soak radish seeds, just sprinkle the seeds in the container and spread the seeds well, leaving some gaps in the cluster of seeds. Cover the seeds with growing medium and flatten out the surface. Even if you don’t cover the seeds, the radish seeds will grow really well. Water the seeds well after planting. After two days, the seeds will sprout and begin to grow. Radish seeds do not require any weight on top to start growing either. Little seedlings will develop with pink stalks. After two more days, the radish microgreens are about one to two inches tall. Radish microgreens grow very fast. After another two days, which is six days since planting, the radish microgreens are 3 inches tall and ready to harvest. The radish microgreens have a very spicy flavor and very much resemble the case of radishes. These microgreens can be added to soups, salads, and sandwiches for spicy and crunchy flavor. Simply cut the top two inches of microgreens to harvest, and check out all these beautiful microgreens.

4. Broccoli microgreens

Number four, broccoli microgreens. First, start with some broccoli seeds. You do not have to pre-soak broccoli seeds. Add the seeds on top of growing medium, use carefully as it is very easy to over plant broccoli seeds. Spread the seeds evenly with hand throughout the container. After planting, water the container one more time. Do not top the seeds with soil, just place another container on top to block out the seeds and put some weight on top. It is very important to add weight on top of broccoli seeds so that the roots penetrate deep into the soil and the microgreens develop straight and tall. Broccoli microgreens will not grow well without adding weight on top. After three days, uncover the container and the broccoli seeds have developed shoots. The shoots are yellow because of lack of sunlight, while there are some green shoots around the edges because these got some light. Keep watering every other day with the spray bottle. After another two days, the shoots are about an inch tall. The container is going very evenly and there is absolutely no mold in this container. Place the container near an airflow or a draft from AC or heat vent. Proper air flow prevents mold as well. After another two days, the shoes are about two inches tall. After another day, the shoots are about three inches tall and ready to harvest. Their growth is straight, smooth, and healthy. Harvest the shoots with scissor or knife. Take the top two inches of shoots when harvesting. Look at these beautiful shoots. I’m going to chop these up and add them to my soup. You can add these shoots to almost any dish.

5. Cress Microgreens

Number five, cress microgreens. First, start with some cress seeds. Add the cress seeds to a jar and then add water to soak the seeds for 24 hours. Cress seeds will develop a gel-like medium after soaking, similar to chia seeds. Transfer the cress seeds from the jar to the container including any gel or water from the jar. Do not top the seeds with soil or block out the seeds. There’s no need to weigh down the cress seeds either. After two days, the cress seeds will develop shoots. The shoots are yellow but soon they will turn green. Keep watering every other day with the spray bottle. After another two days, the shoots are about an inch tall. The container is growing very evenly and smooth. After another two days, the shoots are about two inches tall and ready to harvest. If left to grow any further, the delicate shoots will topple over and start falling. Harvest the shoots with scissors or knife. Look at these beautiful shoots. I’m going to add these cress microgreens directly to my sandwich. 

I really hope you learned something from this article and that you actually grow microgreens in your house. Growing your own food is the healthiest way to live a lifestyle. With the mass production of products these days, we don’t even know what’s in our produce. There’s so much chemical, fertilizers, and pesticides being sprayed on our produce. I say no to that. Let’s take the matter into our own hands. Let’s grow of our own organic produce, of our own fruits and vegetables and herbs, and live a healthy lifestyle. If you don’t have access to land, you can grow stuff indoors. You can grow stuff on your kitchen counter. You can grow sprouts, microgreens. I made a video about ten herbs you can grow on your kitchen counter.

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