How to Grow Micro Greens in 7 Days

How to Grow Micro Greens in 7 Days

scarlett frills

I want to grow my own vegetables.  I live in a cute apartment with a little communal back patio that doesn’t get much sunlight.  Word on the street: sunshine is the magic elixir to growing your own produce so it seem’s I’m outta luck.   When I visit Seattle Urban Farm Company one (cloudy) afternoon, Colin McCrate, co-founder of SUFCo, takes me on a tour of the urban farming grounds.  He showed this city-fied foodie the accessibility of urban gardening, but you really need sunlight.

I was there to get set up with a micro green growing system (read: 4 trays, seeds and dirt) and I was feeling nervous about the whole endeavor.  See, I wasn’t born with the greenest thumb or an excess of patients.  I’m more of a big picture kinda gal, so remembering to water plants regularly doesn’t always make the to-do list.

Colin asked if I had a windowsill with lots of sunlight and that I did!  He recommended I keep the seeded dirt very moist, which I vowed to do.  Although their new home would be indoors, I figured what the heck, let’s see if we can give these micro greens a shot at life.  Besides, I had an urban farmer a phone call away.

To my surprise, growing micro greens indoors was a breeze, as long as they got enough water.  In seven days I had a prairie of edible greens only seen in this abundance at the farmers market!  My friends came over and I snipped greens with the greatest of care, placing a stems in their palms.

“Try it!”

They were understandably impressed and so was I.  This foodie’s thumb just got a little green.

SUFCo3

A view of SURFco from our micro green work station.

SUFCo 2

Starts for a local SURFCo client, ready for the garden!

big beef

Up close and personal with Big Beef Tomatoes.

SUFCo 1

Two trays act as the growing system for my micro greens.  The top tray has holes for irrigation while the bottom is solid to keep the moisture contained.

Two trays act as the growing system for my micro greens. The top tray has holes for irrigation while the bottom is solid to keep the moisture contained.

I grew two different types of micro greens, Curly Cress (aka Peppergrass) and Scarlet Frills (a mini version of a mustard green). Both were packed with flavor and but the Curly Cress had more of a crunchy texture while the Scarlet Frills were more delicate. Day 1: We spread 2 inches of good quality Cedar Grove dirt in the bottom of the slotted tray, sprinkled 1 1/2 teaspoons of seeds evenly and doused in water. We labeled the seeds so I could taste test different varieties. The trays were then placed next to a window.

Day 2: If you look reeeaaallllly close you can see the little seeds beginning to sprout.

Day 2: If you look reeeaaallllly close you can see the little seeds beginning to sprout.

Day 3: I see green!

Day 3 the micro greens began to unfurl.  It was official, they were growing!

Day 4 the micro greens began to unfurl. It was official, they were growing!

Day 5: Over night they really took off!  The apartment garden has sprung.

Day 5: Over night they really took off! The apartment garden had sprung.

Day 6: The micro greens are lush and springy!

Day 6: The micro greens are lush and springy!

Both varieties are looking quite different.

Both varieties are looking quite different.

Day 7:  My greens are ready to be harvested!  I used scissors to trim them at their base.

Day 7: My greens are ready to be harvested! I used scissors to trim them at their base.

Now that I'm flush with sprouts, how to use them?  Micro green breakfast tacos of course!

Now that I’m flush with sprouts, how to use them? Micro green breakfast tacos of course!