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How To Grow Microgreens Hydroponically

How to grow microgreens hydroponically

Did you know you can grow microgreens without soil?

Let me introduce you to hydroponic gardening.

Growing hydroponically simply means growing plants with water instead of using a growing medium like soil.

This is a faster and easier way to grow microgreens without the need for continuous cleaning.

Growing hydroponically is typically done indoors all year round because the only necessary components for the survival of microgreens are water and light. A

Although there are certain microgreens that grow much better with soil.

These Microgreens Are:

  • Pea Microgreens

  • Sunflower Microgreens

  • Chard Microgreens

  • Cilantro Microgreens

Overall some microgreens will do better in a soil-based growing medium while most do well in a hydroponic grow.

How To Grow Microgreens Hydroponically

Before you start growing microgreens hydroponically, make sure you have all of the required materials ready to go as this will make the growing process so much easier.

Now let's move on to how to actually grow the microgreens.

Step 1. Balance The PH Of Your Water! ---

Microgreen seeds are sensitive to the PH of water. Microgreens thrive at a PH of 6. Most tap water is at a neutral PH of 7, so I highly recommend you buy a PH Kit to adjust the PH.

Make sure to only water your crops with water you have balanced to an acceptable PH. It's also helpful to use filtered water to remove any chlorine from the water.

Step 2. Place Paper Towels In Your Grow Tray ---

Since we are growing hydroponically, soil is out of the equation.

Instead, you can use paper towels double-folded and even grow mats if you prefer them.

Although I recommend using paper towels as they are the less expensive option.

Step 3. Spread Your Seeds ---

Spread 2-3 tablespoons (or the amount shown in the directions) of your seeds evenly onto the paper towels.

If the seeds are not spread evenly this could cause overcrowding and a few other problems.

So make sure not to add too much or too little!

Step 4. Water And Cover Your Seeds ---

Spray your seeds with your water-filled spray bottle to get them nice and moisturized, cover them with anything that will prevent light from reaching them, but make sure there is still sufficient air circulation.

Your newly sown seeds need humidity and dark to thrive.

Set your tray in a place where it won’t get too hot, or too cold. 65 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit is ideal. This begins the germination process.

Spray seeds about 15 times once every 10-12 hours.

Step 5. Uncover and Give Light ---

Your microgreens should be ready to uncover after 3 or 4 days (7 days for beet & cilantro).

You can judge this by watching for when the baby leaves (cotyledons) of your microgreens first emerge and then waiting one more day.

It is important to keep your microgreens in the dark for the first 3 to 4 days to force your microgreens to grow in the struggle for light.

This will help you grow strong microgreens. Once you uncover the tray, make sure your microgreens get plenty of light.

I highly recommend you use LED grow lights. Direct sunlight, fluorescent, or incandescent lights are also good.

If your microgreens angle for light, be sure to rotate the tray occasionally.

Step 6. Check Daily ---

Your microgreens should have the right balance of water from now till harvest.

If necessary, replenish water by sprinkling or pouring water over the paper towels, avoiding the leaves as much as possible.

Water below the paper towels of the growing tray so the roots of the microgreens can have enough water until harvest.

Do not use the spray bottle anymore, as the spray bottle will increase the chances of mold growth.

Step 7. Time To Harvest ---

Most microgreens will be ready to harvest in just 10 days. Some microgreens can be harvested as early as 7 days.

Most microgreens will not last past 14 or 15 days before they must be harvested. Move your trays to a cool, shady place.

If your microgreens are harvested when it is too hot, they will wilt very quickly after harvesting.

If harvested when cool (late evening, early morning), they will tend to stay fresh and crisp.

Step 8. How To Properly Harvest Microgreens ---

Use scissors to cut the microgreens directly from the paper towels. Think of it as giving your microgreens a haircut. Just cut about 2/3rds of an inch above the paper towels.

Step 9: Rinse & Dry –

Use a colander to rinse your microgreens thoroughly under cold water.

Dry the microgreens completely by spreading over a towel or paper towels and air dry. Speed drying by using a fan on a slow setting.

Cut microgreens are best if served right after drying, but can be stored loosely in a bowl in the refrigerator for several days.

Do not try to refrigerate microgreens that are not completely dry.

Step 10. How To Properly Store Microgreens ---

After you harvest your microgreens, you might be wondering how you're going to store them.

Unless you end up eating your entire harvest in one sitting you are going to want to keep them from going bad.

Just simply place them loosely in a bowl or container and put them in the refrigerator.

How to grow microgreens hydroponically

Benefits of Growing Microgreens Hydroponically

Growing microgreens hydroponically can be more beneficial than growing in soil. One reason for this is because soil can become contaminated with bacteria and mold.

Although this is only an issue if you are growing in an environment that is over 80 degrees Fahrenheit.

Typically at home growers will not experience this problem since you will be growing indoors where you have full control over the temperature and environment.

With that aside, there is an ascending market for microgreens, and more people are becoming aware that they can be grown at home.

The easiest way to start growing them right now is with hydroponic methods.

5 Benefits For Growing Microgreens Hydroponically:

1. Reduces The Cost of Growing

Instead of having to spend that extra money on soil, you can instead just use paper towels which are far more affordable and take up less space. You also use less water since most of it is just recycled back into the system.

2. Creates less mess for a cleaner harvest

Growing microgreens hydroponically is generally going to create less of a mess, as you don't need to worry about spilling soil throughout your house when cleaning the grow trays. Especially if you are growing on your kitchen counter or bedroom window!

3. You use less water which saves you time and money

When using a hydroponic method, you re-use the water in the growing tray. Pretty much the water is used in a cycle. Which typically only requires you to water microgreens just a few times throughout the entire grow.

4. You are more in control of watering, creating less chance for over/under-watering

Over/under-watering your soil is much more likely to happen than if you were to just use the same water from the beginning of the grow. Since you will be using mostly the same water throughout the entire grow you will not have to worry about over/underwatering.

5. They can be grown all year long

Growing microgreens hydroponically is typically done indoors all year round because the only necessary components for the survival of microgreens are water and light. You also have more control over the indoor temperature so you can provide the most ideal growing environment.

How to grow microgreens hydroponically

Final Thoughts on Growing Microgreens Hydroponically

As you can see, growing microgreens hydroponically is extremely easy and simple.

All you really need is a couple of main supplies and you are good to go.

There are many benefits to growing microgreens without soil, it's less messy, you save money, and it prevents mold growth.

Establish Growers is supported by its audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

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