These 5 best benefits of growing microgreens will save you time, money, and is overall healthy for your wellbeing. Let’s start over!
We grow up taunted with promises of dessert if we would just eat our greens at dinner. As adults, you have to wonder—what is it about greens, more specifically microgreens, that is so important in your diet? What benefits do they have that have now made them a popular gardening staple?
But if you’re still debating whether you should still take on the challenge of growing them on your own, we’ve compiled a list of five reasons why it’s worth it.
#1 Microgreens don’t take much time to grow.
In a world that revolves around time and speed, it’s essential to find a way to incorporate these things into your daily life, but why not do it while reaping the benefits of enjoying fresh greens?
As the name microgreen alludes to, the peak of harvest for these plants occurs early in the growth process. After a few weeks of adequate water and sunlight, the microgreens will have small leaves and be ready for picking. For most microgreen varieties, you can plant, grow, and harvest them in under a month.
With such a wide variety of microgreens, it is essential to note that each family and seed will have differing growth times before they can be harvested. In addition, each microgreen’s taste will vary the longer they are allowed to grow. To dive deeper into the many different families and the time expected before harvest for each microgreen, check out the chart below:
|Plant Family||Example of Microgreen Seeds||Growth Time|
|Apiaceae||Carrot||1 month, or more|
As you can see, a good majority of these young plants can grow at speeds that make them easy to be kept as a continuing staple in your home.
#2 It’s inexpensive to start and continue.
It’s easy to assume that taking on a new project like this can be time-consuming and costly. However, one of the most significant benefits of growing your own microgreens at home is that many kits are available to purchase online, most of which fall within the price range of $20 to $40.
Each of these kits may vary in what is included. It is essential as the consumer to determine the microgreens you’re interested in growing first, then finding an accommodating kit that may provide the best results. For example, some microgreens grow faster in hydroponic systems, while others flourish in soil. Adding in this consideration can aid in making the best kit decision for you.
With a low-cost startup, microgreen growing kits can produce unlimited amounts of various microgreens, which can be harvested within three weeks and last up to two weeks with proper storage.
Even if you don’t purchase a kit, there are few items needed to start growing microgreens, and most of them are inexpensive on their own. All you need is:
- Space with direct sunlight or a grow light
- A container, preferably rectangular, to maximize space for different varieties
- Seeds from your preferred greens
- Soil (unless growing hydroponically, then a nutrient solution must be added to water)
Overall, you’ll be saving money on these nutritious and health beneficial foods that would cost more to buy organically at the grocery store.
#3 You can start a business growing them.
Many growers of microgreens find themselves with more plants than could have been expected before venturing into the world of microgreen gardening. With an influx of people searching for nutritious, delicious foods to add to their recipe repertoire, there is a substantial market for locally sourced and organically grown microgreens.
Depending on the variety you’re selling and the bulk of what is harvested, many microgreen varieties can be expected to sell by the pound in amounts up to—and sometimes passing—$50.
Where would be the best places to sell your microgreens? Many microgreen enthusiasts find success in local markets and selling to friends. However, the profits that come from supplying to a broader consumer market could be plentiful. According to Microgreens Farmer, the most convenient and steady income can be found through local restaurants. Learn more about the different ways you can sell locally.
#4 Nutritional Benefits of Growing Microgreens
Microgreens have many nutritional benefits, including having additional vitamins that may be more difficult to get without these microgreens, especially in a vegetarian-based diet. These vitamins include:
- Vitamin E, which supports both the eyes and immune system (commonly found in Brassica variety, like radishes)
- Vitamin A, which supports most organ functions and immune system (commonly found in the Asteraceae variety, like endives)
One of the significant health benefits of microgreens that scientists have found within the small greens is their ability to contain many antioxidants that can be beneficial in fighting off a multitude of diseases and removing harmful free radicals from the body.
Note that the health benefits available will vary by the plant, but overall these young plants have a higher level of nutrients stored in them compared to their mature counterparts.
#5 Microgreens are diverse in use.
Superfoods are a hot topic in today’s wellness industry, and growing your own comes with the greater merit of being at the forefront of a diverse food sensation.
Of the superfood favorites, microgreens are the reigning champions of a more significant food movement towards organic, antioxidant-filled nutrients. Because microgreens come from various families, each holds a different nutritional benefit and varies in its use in recipes.
Most microgreens produce a similar flavor profile to their mature counterparts. For a more intense and broader flavor profile, microgreens make a substantial substitute with fewer calories and enhanced nutrient content. Microgreens also have a wider variety of taste and flavor than mature elements in the same or similar family.
When creating meals, it can be helpful to have certain things on hand, such as the forever cherished salt and pepper. But, adding in nutritionally valuable microgreens like broccoli, kale, basil, and cauliflower to your dishes can be the missing element to create diverse, fresh flavors or accompany a meal as a stand-alone side for a dish. For ideas of how to use microgreens in your favorite meals, check out the extensive list of recipes from Brit + Co.
Even if you don’t believe you have a green thumb, microgreens are one plant type that many find easy to grow from the comfort of home. There’s also plenty of benefits that come with planting your own microgreens. Not only are they fast growers, but they’re also inexpensive to grow, have high nutritional values, and be used in a variety of ways, from mixing in salads to topping delectable meals. You can even start your own business growing microgreens since the demand for these small healthy greens has never been higher.
With a substantial number of microgreen plants to choose from, it is up to you as to which ones you would like to try growing first. For some, it may be easier to focus on what you’d like to incorporate into your own diet and daily lifestyle; for others, this adventure may be focused on the profit and sustainability that comes with locally grown produce.
In conclusion, there are plenty of benefits of growing microgreens, and there’s no harm in giving it a try. You may discover you have a new hobby or enjoy reaping the many benefits these tiny plants offer.