In recent decades, more people have been doing hydroponic gardening to grow their vegetables as a hobby or on large-scale commercial agriculture. Most microgreens germinate quickly and can be harvested in less than a week. Microgreens can be grown with or without soil and the materials required to grow them are cheap, easily obtainable and setting it up to grow. It doesn't require much space to grow these microgreens too, with as little as a few square inches of space! In this article, we will share what microgreen plants are and how we can grow them in our tiny, limited indoor space for our house or office.
What are Microgreens?
Microgreens are first originated in California, used by chefs to create a unique, innovative way to decorate and display their dishes. Used as toppings and garnishing in salads, it became a top, popular healthy dish loved by people. With increasing popularity through the years, microgreens are sold at a high-value price in supermarkets and stores. Microgreens are harvested at an immature stage where it's slightly bigger than a sprout and smaller than a baby green with at least 2 leaves growing. Apart from easy growth, microgreens provide many health benefits, being rich in potassium, iron, zinc, magnesium, copper and many other nutrients. Depending on the type of microgreen that is grown, some types such as radish microgreens have high levels of antioxidants which consists of cancer-fighting properties.
Tips to take note while growing Microgreens
However, under the humid conditions where microgreens are grown, there may be a risk of fungal growth and contamination risk. Plant disease outbreaks may occur if old seeds are used or having unstable temperatures during the germination period. Over-watering may pose a risk for seedling rot before germination can occur. Take note of the height of your microgreens to make sure that it is not over-grown as tall microgreens are harder to harvest and may flop downwards. To prevent the risk of disease outbreaks, please use new, good seeds and research the right amount of water you need for your seeds. If you realize that your seedlings are infected by fungus or beginning to rot, do not eat them and discard the entire tray. Sterilize the tray with vinegar and rinse your tray well before using it for growing again. Before you start growing microgreen, you could plan out what microgreen vegetable you would like to eat. A microgreen salad mix is an ideal start to try a variety of microgreens. It's alright to sow several different varieties of microgreens in the same tray but do take note and make sure that they have the same harvest time for extra freshness and easy harvest.
Materials to grow them
Baba Yasa-i Tray and Baba Microgreen box are suitable for growing vegetables. If you are growing vegetables that take more than 2 weeks to harvest, it is recommended to use the Yasa-i Tray. The tray is specially designed for growing vegetables, up to 50% more compared to other planter boxes of the same size. It is durable, reusable and lightweight. It has multiple raised holes at the bottom which retains sufficient water and drains excess water for your vegetables.
Here's a guide to use this tray:
1) Put and spread the potting soil onto the tray.
2) Dig a few small holes (with a few centimeters away from each other) and place 2 to 3 seeds into it. Gently cover up the hole after placement.
3) Water throughout the tray but not flooded. Wait for 3 ~ 7 days for germination.
4) Put fertilizer to promote plant growth once a week.
5) Vegetables usually take about 30 days to harvest and fruits take about 50 to 60 days to harvest.
For vegetables that take 1 to 2 weeks to harvest, you could use the Microgreen Box to grow them. The box does not require any soil to grow your microgreen. It is lightweight and easy to clean after every usage. It is space-efficient due to its small size, allowing you to grow your microgreen anywhere.
Here's a guide to use this box:
1) Before you start, prepare the seeds into a container and soak the seeds with filtered or cool boiled water overnight.
2) Pour filtered or cool boiled water into the box and fill it up to the cultivation net in the box.
3) Pour and spread the seeds evenly around the cultivation net.
4) Take note of the plants' growth for a week. Remember to change the water once every 3 days.
5) Harvest them within 1 to 2 weeks, depending on your microgreen's growth.