Growing microgreen is the easiest task when everything works well. However it is quite complicated if the greens look weak.
It is difficult to identify the problems but basic understanding of the microgreens and foreseen complications benefits smooth growing experience. Ultimately, growing plants is all about trying new things, experimenting again and again. At the end it is all worth it with healthy greens.
Here are some of the secret tips:
1. Mould or Fungus
Always observe your microgreens carefully to find if there is a growth of mould or fungus. If you find a white fuzzy growth surrounding the roots, it’s root hairs, not mould. Roots hairs are lighter but the moulds are generally darker in colour, denser and are formed on soil or around the seeds.
Here are some tips to follow in order to prevent moulds:
- Make sure you use clean containers.
- Sunlight and ventilation prevents mould. It is suggested that after germination it is better to shift your plants to a space where there is direct sunlight.
- Do not dump too many seeds in the tray as it results in crowds. This crowd acts as a host for mould.
- Do not overwater your microgreens.
2. Protecting the microgreens:
Protect the tiny little greens from ants, rodents or birds. Keep them out of reach of your pets.
3. Uneven Growth
Sometimes the growth may be uneven, tall on one end and on the other end they might be shorter in a single container because of following reasons:
- Dumping too many seeds: Overseeding leads to uneven growth as the seeds compete for the restricted area. Therefore it is suggested to use a dispenser for spreading the seeds evenly.
- The space that you choose to place the plants: Make sure that the whole container obtains equal amount of shade and sunlight to avoid uneven growth.
4. Slow Germination Rate
Usually within 2 to 3 days microgreen seeds start to germinate. But if there is no emergence or the grow media looks dry, drizzle some amount of water. It is also better to pre-soak the seeds for 10 to 14 hours before sowing.
5. Leaning Microgreens:
The little greens will start to lean when there is no sufficient amount of sunlight and water provided. Therefore always make sure that your microgreens get enough light and water.
6. Watering Microgreens:
Do not overwater your microgreens as they are very delicate and over watering may damage them. You can use spray bottles or use a grow container with holes and place it in a container with water where the roots absorb sufficient amounts of water. You can go through our recent blog Best ways to water microgreens.
7. Foul Smell:
Microgreens smell bad if there is mould formed or if they are overwatered. Make sure to maintain adequate temperature, humidity, light and airflow.
8. Yellowish Microgreens
Generally microgreens appear yellowish during the germination phase and turn green once exposed to sunlight.
9. Controlling Pests:
Microgreens grown indoors generally don’t have the problem of pests. However, if they are grown in a greenhouse they might get affected by the pests. There are different kinds of pests like Aphids, Thrips, Whiteflies etc., which cause leaf deformation or yellow leaves.
What causes Pests?
There are several reasons like overwatering, less water, insufficient or more heat and light, fertilizers etc. Pests doesn’t invade if the microgreens are grown in a single tray indoors. However if the tray is closer to some other plants there is a chance of invasion.
Make sure to place the microgreens away from other plants when grown indoors.
Always provide necessary growing conditions required for the microgreens to grow healthy.
Do not use the soil which has already been used.
And if the pests has invaded, use pesticides. But be careful that they might not only be toxic for the plants but also for us when consumed.
10. Harvesting And Storing Microgreens
Trim the microgreens right above the soil level with a scissor or knife. It is suggested to harvest the microgreens when you want to consume them as they don’t last long. But if you want to keep them for a few more days, store them in a glass container.
Growing microgreens is such a bliss where we get to try out new things and at the end we are rewarded with healthy tiny little greens.
We hope you find this blog informative. Check out our previous blog Most nutritious microgreens to grow.