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Greenhouse, Garden & Allotment Blog

How to Grow Microgreens In Winter

Posted by Alix Francis on 23rd Oct 2018

How to Grow Microgreens In Winter

Make the most out of the warm winter sun and add a few seed trays by a bright window inside your home to grow microgreens throughout the cooler months.

Microgreens and shoots are a quick and easy to grow and are packed full of flavour making them a great way to liven up your winter salad, sandwiches or soups.

What are Microgreens

Microgreens, a buzzword which has been flying around for a few years now that simply means micro leaves, the seedlings of leafy herbs and plants also known as vegetable confetti. Microgreens are a variety of edible greens which can be harvested with scissors less than a month after their germination.

What Seeds Can You Use?

The best seeds to use to grow microgreens are; salad greens, leafy vegetables, herbs and edible flowers. If you’re a beginner or new to growing microgreens, you could start with growing one type of seed such as;

  • Lettuce
  • Kale
  • Spinach
  • Radish
  • Beet
  • Watercress
  • Herbs
  • Greens
  • Cabbage
  • Mustard
  • Chia
  • Sunflower
  • Buckwheat

These are the easiest to begin with as they can all be grown in a single container.

How to get started

You can get started with a warm, sunny windowsill and a small, clean container to grow your microgreens in. People often use plastic take-out containers or clear fruit/salad/lunch boxes.

Make sure there is drainage in your chosen container, you can add this by poking a few holes in the bottom of the container.

  • 1.Always check the seed packet before planting to see if there are any special instructions
  • 2.Ensure the bottom of your container is covered with an inch or two of moistened potting soil or mix and level it with your hands or a piece of cardboard. Try not to compress or compact the soil in the process.
  • 3.Evenly scatter and distributer the seeds across the top of the soil then press gently into the soil using your hand or carboard.
  • 4.Once seeds have been distributed and pressed, cover the seeds with a thin layer of soil. If you can it’s advisable to dampen the layer of soil slightly.
  • 5.Cover the container with a clear lid or plastic wrap (e.g. cling film)
  • 6.Wait for seeds to start sprouting over the next few days and mist them once or twice daily with a water bottle mister.
  • 7.Once your seeds have sprouted, remove the cover and continue to mist once or twice daily.

For the best results microgreens will need around 4-5 hours daily of direct sunlight to thrive. During the winter months you may need to give them a little more sunlight.

If your greens are looking pale, this is a sign of too little sunlight.

When to Harvest

Your microgreens should be ready to harvest around 2-3 weeks after planting them but this all depends on what type of seeds you selected to plant.

You should now be seeing leaves on your microgreens, if they look ready, grab a pair of scissors and begin to snip the greens above the soil line.

Wash your freshly snipped greens with water and dry with paper towels. For the freshest taste it’s best to serve immediately. You can add them to soups, salads, sandwich or main dishes.

What’s not used can be stored in a sealable bag in your refrigerator. 

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