Each week as you may know, I chat with Matt Swaim on Sacred Heart Radio, Sonrise Morning Show. Today, with Earth Day around the corner, we talked about the plants we’ve been blessed to have and how to grow them quickly as microgreens.
What are microgreens?
Most folks know what sprouts are – I grow those usually in water. They are eaten when the first set of leaves develop. We eat them root and all.
Microgreens are the sprout’s sophisticated older cousins. While sprouts are grown without growing medium and are eaten roots and all, microgreens are cultivated in a growing medium and are trimmed at the base and consumed. I like to use potting soil. I put a one inch layer of soil in a plastic tray with drainage holes. Those clam shell trays that produce comes in are great.
They need 4-8 hours of light a day – put in a south facing window. How long does it take to harvest?
Microgreens are harvested when they’re a couple of weeks old and have developed their first set of true leaves. On the other hand, sprouts are eaten just as the first set of leaves that emerge from the seed– become green.
Microgreens are superfoods!
These baby greens are full of health benefits and radically outperform their mature counterparts in antioxidants.
Do microgreens regrow after cutting?
Microgreens won’t grow back after cutting. A plant’s seed usually only contains enough energy to get the first set of true leaves up.
How do you use them?
Let the little ones pluck them at soil level and put on salads, in pastas, juices, sauces, sandwiches, or just pop them in your mouth!
Why grow your own microgreens?
- Easy to grow in a limited amount of space, quick turnaround, great for beginners and no worries about climate since they’re grown basically indoors.
Some plants mentioned in the Bible or eaten during Bible days make great microgreens.
Cilantro/coriander – that’s analogous to the manna that the Israelites ate during their journey out of Egypt.
Basil – legend has it that basil was found growing near Christ’s tomb after He resurrected. Try purple basil.
Mustard – so spicy! – Matthew 17:20 – faith as small as a mustard seed will move mountains….. Broccoli and kale are members of the mustard family and they make great microgreens.
Beets – not mentioned specifically in the Bible, it ancient Romans ate beets, greens and all. They’re a cousin to Swiss chard, and a good source of calcium and iron.
Radishes – so pretty and a bit spicy, too. Not mentioned specifically in the Bible but they were served to Egyptian slaves.
Peas, lentils and beans – part of the legume family – Familiar passage in 2 Samuel