Hydroponic microgreens, sprouts and baby leaf lettuces are not only easy to grow, they are full of nutrients and vitamins.
HOW TO GROW SPROUTS
I have a parrot, Cody, and one of the foods he isn’t picky about is sprouts. (He enjoys eating them, although his beak gets somewhat messy) Sprouts are easy to grow and many types of beans, lentils, nuts, seeds and other legumes have become popular sprouting crops. Most sprouts are grown hydroponically and can easily be grown in a mason jar or other vessel. I use a small bowl, fill it with 1/3rd with various beans and legumes, cover with water and top it with a film of plastic wrap with holes punched in the top. The mix is then let to sit 24 hours. Then drain the water, rinse the sprouts in cold water, place them back into the bowl and cover again with the plastic. This sits again for another 24 hours. Within 2 to 2.5 days tiny roots are popping out within the bowl. (These sprouts are food grade so I also partake with Cody in their taste and nutritional value.)
Microgreens are sprouts that are left to grow further and harvested when the tiny plants produce one set of leaves. They are also grown in a soilless growing media or fibrous sprouting mats. Leaving these plants to produce young shoots that are rich in chlorophyll create, what most people believe, to be tastier than spouts with tiny roots. A good example are pea sprouts but you can use mustard, mung beans, alfalfa, flax seeds etc.
Small leaf greens are in a different category because they are lettuce. Many different lettuce varieties will perpetually produce new leaves,which you can clip while leaving the plant to grow. Leaf greens are usually planted in nutrient rich soil or hydroponically with a water soluble vegetative fertilizer. The greens are usually spaced very close together in what ever medium you choose.
By soaking and sprouting seeds, you unlock all the nutrients contained within and most sprouts, microgreens and small leaf salad greens are packed with an array of micro and macro nutrients. It’s a fact that sprouts contain more nutrition pound per pound when compared to fully grown plants. When we think of seeds, we should think that sprouted seeds and eating microgreens is like taking a high-quality multivitamin pill, in food grade form.
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