Planted Chia 20 June
Before placing your seeds on a paper towel, it’s best to soak them in water first. Depending on the seed variety, you might want to soak them for a few hours or even overnight.
This step is optional, but it will help to soften and open up the hard exterior shell of the seed. We find that we get better germination rates and they sprout sooner if we soak them first.
Note: Some seeds like basil or chia cannot be soaked in advance. They produce a thick gel that makes them hard to separate and spread evenly.
Soak a few sheets of paper towel in water. Once soaked, you want to squeeze out most of the Right level of dampness is when only a drop or two of water comes out when you squeeze it.
Fold paper towel so that it’s a few layers thick and line the bottom of your container.
Container with sides that are five to 10 cm to give your microgreens room to space if you’re planning to cover them.
Use a small spoon to evenly spread your seeds across the surface of the paper towel. Take care not to apply too much pressure or you may crush some of the seeds.
After adding your seeds, mist them with a few squeezes of your water bottle. Then cover them with another sheet of paper towel.
Your seeds need to be kept dark for about a week to mimic the natural conditions of growing underground. Place your container in a cupboard or cover it with another container not exposed to light.
After 24 hours, you should start to see some seeds starting to sprout. Especially if you soaked them before putting them on the paper towel.
Check your paper towel each day to see if it’s at the correct moisture level. If it still feels wet, you can leave it and cover the tray back up. If it feels dry, you can gently spray it with a water bottle to rehydrate it.
Use a mist setting on the spray bottle and avoid spraying too hard as you may dislodge the newly-forming roots from the paper towel.
Repeat this process of checking on your microgreens and adding water as needed.
Around day five, your seeds will have turned into sprouts. But they are not truly microgreens yet and won’t have fully developed their nutrients and flavor.
After seven days, should be getting tall and have tiny leaves that have formed.
At this point uncover your container or take them out and expose them to light. This will cause them to start the photosynthesis process and turn from a pale yellowish-white color to a vibrant green over the next few days.
Continue adding water to your paper towel as-needed to ensure that it’s kept moist, but not overly wet or damp.
After your microgreens have been exposed to light for at least a day or two and their leaves have turned a deep green color, they’re ready to harvest.
You can let your microgreens grow for a few extra days so they get to a larger size and develop more nutrients. However eventually the seeds will run out of energy and they’ll start to die back. So we recommend harvesting your microgreens by day 13 after planting.
To harvest your greens without any waste, you can gently pull them away from the paper towel and they should separate. This will leave the roots and seed hulls intact.
All parts are edible, but some people prefer to not eat the seed hulls. Rinsing your greens in a bowl of cold water will cause most of the seed hulls to float to the surface where they can be easily skimmed off.
If you also don’t want to eat the roots, you can simply take a sharp pair of scissors or a knife and cut the microgreens off the paper towel instead of pulling them off. This is how microgreens are harvested when they’re grown in soil.