Nutritious, delicious, and an excellent addition to your diet, you can grow microgreens in your kitchen. But how to grow microgreens without soil?
By growing microgreens in water, you can toss the dirt and have clean greens available year-round.
Hydroponics has become widely accepted, and many avid gardeners enjoy using this method of growing vegetables.
There are varying ways to begin your venture into microgreens and hydroponics.
You can start with a basic setup or go hog wild and put them in a hydroponic growing area that could eventually make money for you.
Read further about how to grow microgreens without soil to learn how to grow your plants in water.
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How to grow microgreens without soil?
First, soak the growing pads up with unchlorinated water before placing the microgreens in them. Space each seed a millimeter apart. Then, cover the seeds with a plastic lid, making sure to leave a gap for airflow. Place the tray in a warm area, occasionally checking it to ensure the pad stays damp.
Step-by-Step Guide in Growing Microgreens Without Soil
First, choose the equipment you will need. You can start with growing mats, trays or purchase a unit specifically designed to grow microgreens.
For either application, soak your grow pad or fill your planter with unchlorinated water. For the best results, the water’s pH level should be between 5.5 and 6.5.
Place your seeds on the pre-wetted growing mat, with about a millimeter between each seed. Cover the seeds with a plastic lid, leave space for air to flow, and place your tray in a warm area.
Check it occasionally to be sure the pad stays damp. Once the greens sprout, introduce them to light and keep monitoring the water level.
The Equipment You’ll Need For Soil-less Microgreen Growing
It requires very little equipment to get started. Grow pads are made from coco coir, hemp, jute, and other organic materials.
The growth medium does not add nutrients; it gives your tiny plants something to attach to their roots.
Since they will not be there long, the growth medium does not need to be very thick.
Growers recommend a 10-inch x 20-inch tray that is one and a half to two inches deep. You may already have something like that around your home, but a tray and pad are less than five dollars, new.
Of course, both pads and trays come in packages of 10, 15, and 20, but you can begin your journey with microgreens for less than $50.
Furthermore, you can grow many microgreens for that amount of money.
What Hydroponics Is
Hydroponics is a way for you to grow plants that skips the soil. Instead, your plants grow in water with nutrients added, and many growers have found it returns greater yields than conventional growing methods.
Once you have things set up and your plants begin to grow, your microgreens will require very little attention and a considerable return.
Used in fine dining establishments and sold as a superfood, microgreens can be very expensive in the grocery store.
If you grow your microgreens, though, you can have the nutrition of this superfood every day.
Is growing microgreens hydroponically easy?
Yes, it is, and like growing anything from seed, what it requires most is patience. But, oh, the joy of eating food that you have raised yourself.
If you are new to hydroponics or gardening, growing microgreens is an excellent place to start.
Growing microgreens is inexpensive, and the rewards far outweigh the initial cost.
Many small farms and entrepreneurs have found that growing microgreens can provide extra income very easily and quickly.
Microgreens And What They Really Are
Often referred to as vegetable confetti or micro herbs, in the culinary world, microgreens can be any of a variety of baby plants harvested when they are one to three inches in height.
Eaten as baby plants, it’s possible they’re more nutritious compared to their adult counterparts. When growing microgreens, you can develop one variety of plants or a blend.
More like baby greens than sprouts; their seeds can be from carrots, dill, cauliflower, beets, radish, watercress, broccoli, melon, cucumber, garlic, onion, or leeks.
The above-mentioned plants aren’t a complete list of seeds that you can grow as microgreens.
The microgreens from these plants have intense flavors that range from sweet to sour, so spicy and bitter. Once you become accustomed to growing microgreens, you can experiment with their use.
Microgreens can be eaten cold, or some of them are hardy enough to use in cooked dishes.
However, if you eat your microgreens, their addition to your diet cannot hurt as a healthy dietary choice.
Seeds Best To Grow As Microgreens
Like all of the plants we grow, some are easy, while others are not. The same goes for microgreens.
If you are new to this endeavor, it is best to play it safe and start with the easy-to-grow plants.
That list includes radish, cabbage, pea shoots, broccoli, and sunflowers.
Or, you could buy microgreen seed mix at your local seed store. These premix seed packs usually have an assortment of seeds, or you can purchase each seed you wish to use separately.
Whichever route you take, you will have fresh greens in less than two weeks.
The more difficult greens include chives, chard, basil, and cilantro. Some plants grow better in soil, as none of the above is difficult to grow in dirt.
Frequently Asked Questions About How To Grow Microgreens Without Soil
Is growing microgreens without soil expensive?
Growing microseed without soil isn’t expensive because you do not need to buy potting soil, and even though you will need fertilizer, it will be less expensive, and your greens will be cleaner.
Do microgreens need fertilizer?
Like other vegetables, microgreens need fertilizers. But, do not add it to their water until they have formed their first and second leaves. You can then add very dilute liquid fertilizer to their water.
Daniel has been a plant enthusiast for over 20 years. He owns hundreds of houseplants and prepares for the chili growing seasons yearly with great anticipation. His favorite plants are plant species in the Araceae family, such as Monstera, Philodendron, and Anthurium. He also loves gardening and is growing hot peppers, tomatoes, and many more vegetables.