Here Are My Favourite Ten Microgreens For UK Winter Growing. They Are Easy To Grow On A Windowsill But You Might Need To Adjust Light And Temperature Conditions, Such As Using Grow Lights And Ensuring Proper Insulation, If You Want To Grow Them En Masse.
In milder areas, or in autumn or very early spring you can grow some of these outdoors. But they wil be slower to germinate and grow much slower.
Kids are often taught to grow mustard and cress at school. So this isn’t difficult with the species listed below. Once you’ve mastered them you might choose to go onto something more difficult. But learn to walk before you try running.
My Basic Microgreens List
- Radish Microgreens: These have a spicy flavor and can grow relatively quickly, making them a great choice for winter.
- Pea Shoots: These have a mild, sweet “pea” flavour and are really tasty alone or in. salad.. They can be harvested at an early stage. And if cut above a node will shoot again.
- Broccoli Microgreens: Like many brassicas these have a mild, slightly peppery taste and are rich in vitamins and minerals.
- Kale Microgreens: Kale microgreens offer a more intense version of the mature kale flavour and are reportedly highly nutritious.
- Mustard Microgreens: Mustard greens have a spicy kick and can add a bold flavour to your dishes.
- Lettuce Microgreens: Lettuce microgreens come in various varieties and offer a delicate, fresh taste.
- Coriander (Cilantro) Microgreens: These have a strong flavor similar to the mature herb and are used in a variety of cuisines.
- Spinach Microgreens: Spinach microgreens have a milder taste compared to mature spinach but retain their nutrient content.
- Chard Microgreens: Chard microgreens have vibrant colors and a slightly earthy flavor.
- Beetroot Microgreens: These have a mild, earthy flavor and are visually appealing with their red stems and green leaves.
- I know I promised ten .. but here’s number eleven. Sunflower seed.
How To Grow Microgreens: In Ten Very Easy Steps
Materials You’ll Need:
- Microgreen seeds … you can buy special ones, but remember, when any seed starts to grow it is a microgreen
- Growing trays or containers
- Potting mix or a growing medium ie compost.
- Water spray bottle
- Clear plastic bag, clingfilm or humidity dome (optional)
- Grow lights (if growing indoors in a dull area)
- Select Seeds: Choose microgreen varieties that you like and that are suitable for the growing conditions you have (indoor or outdoor). Common options include radish, pea shoots, sunflower, broccoli, kale, and more.
- Prepare Containers: Use shallow trays or containers with drainage holes to avoid waterlogging. If you’re growing indoors, ensure the containers are clean. Fungi and moulds are more likely.
- Add Growing Medium: Fill the containers with a thin layer (about 1-2 inches) of potting mix or a specialized microgreen growing medium. Press down gently to create a smooth surface.
- Sow Seeds: Evenly scatter seeds across the surface of the growing medium, they don’t need covering provided they don’t dry out. Aim for dense coverage without overcrowding. Larger seeds like peas can be spaced a bit apart. To begin with try experimenting with the sowing density until you understand what is required. Try sowing at various densities in a single tray and see what works best for you.
- Cover and Water: Lightly mist the seeds with water using a spray bottle. Slip the containers inside a clear plastic bag or cover the containers with clingfilm or a humidity dome to create a greenhouse effect that helps retain moisture. This step is optional but can aid germination. But remember it can create high humidity that encourages fungi … so experiment and keep an eye on things.
- Provide Light: Place the containers in a location with bright, indirect light or use grow lights if growing in a dull spot indoors. Microgreens require several hours of light each day. BUT some species germinate quicker if you ignore the light requirement and place them in an airing cupboard until they start to germinate!
- Watering: Keep the growing medium consistently moist but not soggy. Water gently using the spray bottle to avoid disturbing the seeds. Ensure good drainage to prevent mould/fungal growth.
- Monitor and Care: As the seeds germinate and sprout, remove the covers. Continue to provide adequate light and water as needed. Keep an eye out for any signs of disease or pests.
- Harvesting: Microgreens are typically ready to harvest when they have developed their first set of true leaves, usually around 1-3 weeks after sowing, depending on the variety. Use clean scissors to cut the microgreens just above the soil line.
- Enjoy: Rinse the harvested microgreens, pat them dry, and enjoy them in salads, sandwiches, smoothies, or as garnishes.
Remember that different microgreens may have specific care requirements, so it’s a good idea to research the specific varieties you’re growing. Additionally, experimentation and learning from experience will help you fine-tune your growing process over time.
Some people I know have moved from growing on a windowsill to producing en masse as a microgreens business where they serve restaurants and other outlets! It’s a very scalable process once you learn the basics.
So this is Microgreens For UK Winter Growing .. but they can be grown any month!
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