Do Microgreens Need Light? The Role of Light in Growing Greens

HomeGrowingDo Microgreens Need Light? The Role of Light in Growing Greens

Quick Answer:
Microgreens require light to grow, but the amount and type of light needed will depend on the specific type of microgreen being grown. Some microgreens, such as sunflower and pea shoots, can be grown without direct sunlight, while others, such as basil and cilantro, require more intense light.

Do microgreens need light? Microgreens are a popular type of vegetable, but many people don’t understand their needs. Growing these nutrient-dense vegetables requires some specialized knowledge, and it all starts with knowing how much light they require. In this article, we’ll discuss the importance of providing adequate lighting to your microgreen plants so you can get the most out of them.

Microgreens have exploded in popularity over recent years due to their tremendous health benefits. They’re packed full of essential vitamins and minerals that help boost your immunity, improve digestion, and even reduce inflammation! But if you want to reap all these wonderful rewards from your microgreen garden, there’s one key element you must provide – light. Without enough light, your microgreens won’t be able to grow properly or reach their full potential.

Light is an important part of growing any kind of plant – not just microgreens! To ensure your little green sprouts flourish in your indoor garden, it’s vital that you know exactly what kind of lighting they need. Let’s take a look at why light is important for healthy microgreen growth and how you can make sure yours get what they need!

Components Needed For Growth

Microgreens are a popular and nutritious form of produce, but they require specific components for optimal growth. First, soil is necessary to provide structure and support for the roots of the microgreen plant. It should be nutrient-rich, so fertilizers may need to be added in order to ensure that it has adequate levels of key nutrients such as nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. Microgreens also need sufficient water to stay hydrated; however, too much can cause them to rot or become moldy. As such, careful monitoring of moisture levels is essential.

In addition to these elements, containers are needed to house the plants while they grow. Containers can be made out of plastic or fabric pots and should have holes at the bottom for drainage. The size will depend on what type of microgreen you’re growing – some varieties prefer shallow trays while others may require deeper planters. Proper ventilation must be provided when using any container type in order to prevent fungal infections from occurring due to excess humidity.

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Finally, all this preparation provides an ideal environment for the growth of healthy microgreens! With proper care and attention given throughout their development cycle, there’s no doubt that you’ll enjoy harvesting your own homegrown crop soon enough. To ensure success in cultivation, next we’ll discuss light requirements for photosynthesis.

Light Requirements For Photosynthesis

Back in the day, when it comes to photosynthesis and light requirements for plants, we knew that sunlight was essential. Nowadays, with advances in horticultural technology, there is a wide range of options available to grow microgreens indoors. Here are three key points about light needs for growing microgreens:

  • Light intensity: Microgreens need high-intensity full spectrum lights (fluorescent or LED) between 15 – 20 hours per day, depending on the type of greens being grown.
  • Light duration: The length of time the light should be left on depends on how quickly you want your microgreens to mature; more intense lighting will cause them to develop more quickly.
  • Light source: Natural sunlight can work if you don’t have access to artificial lights; however, natural sunlight usually provides lower intensity than an artificial light source.

The right balance of these factors plays a big role in successful indoor cultivation of microgreens. With all this information at hand, let’s take a look at some indoor growing methods for cultivating delicious microgreens!

Indoor Growing Methods

Indoor growing methods are becoming more popular for those who want to grow microgreens. Here, we’ll look at the requirements and techniques needed for a successful indoor crop.

Requirements Light Source Options Soil Types
Water Requirements LEDs/Fluorescent Lighting Coco Coir or Potting Mix
Harvesting Tips Natural Sunlight (south-facing windows) Compost or Vermiculite Mixture

Having the right setup is key to ensure your microgreens thrive indoors. You will need to provide adequate light from either LED/fluorescent lighting, natural sunlight through south-facing windows, or any other artificial source of illumination you find suitable. For soil types, you can use coco coir or potting mix with compost or vermiculite mixtures if preferred – just make sure it’s organic and free of disease. To keep them healthy, be sure to water regularly while keeping an eye on the moisture level in the soil; too little and they may not sprout correctly and too much could potentially damage them. When harvesting time comes around, cut just above ground level using clean scissors to avoid contamination.

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With proper care and attention given during their growth cycle, you can enjoy fresh homegrown produce all year round! Following these guidelines should help get you started as well as give you an idea of what needs to be done for a successful indoor harvest. Next up: outdoor growing methods!

Outdoor Growing Methods

Transitioning from indoor growing methods, it’s time to take the next step of microgreens production outdoors. Much like a butterfly leaving its chrysalis and emerging into the world, outdoor growing presents an entirely new set of possibilities for harvesting healthy microgreens. Like any garden plot, container gardening requires soil preparation before planting – however, unlike traditional plots, direct sunlight is not necessary for growth.

When selecting a location for your container garden, choose one that receives at least 6-8 hours of indirect light per day; too much direct sunlight may cause wilting or scorching in some varieties of microgreens. Additionally, ensure there’s adequate airflow and good drainage so water doesn’t accumulate around the roots. To protect against pests, use natural pest repellants such as garlic pepper tea spray when needed.

Proper soil preparation forms an integral part of successful outdoor microgreen production. Test your soil pH prior to planting with a testing kit available at most local nurseries or online stores. If possible add organic matter such as composted manure to enrich your soil with extra nutrients – this will help promote vigorous plant growth and reduce diseases and stress on your plants caused by nutrient deficiencies.

With all these factors considered, you are ready to start sowing and cultivating your own healthy crop of tasty microgreens! Soon you’ll be able to enjoy their flavor and nutrition benefits within weeks rather than months compared to regular crops grown outdoors in typical gardens. With careful planning and maintenance along the way, a bountiful harvest awaits!

Harvesting And Storage

Harvesting microgreens is usually done once the plants reach about 2-3 inches in height. The technique for harvesting varies depending on the variety of microgreen being grown, but generally you should use scissors or garden shears to cut off just above where the leaves meet the stem. After cutting, it’s important to store them correctly and quickly so as not to lose any moisture.

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The best storage method for most varieties of microgreens is to wrap them loosely in a damp paper towel and then place that inside an airtight container. This will help keep the greens fresh until they are ready to be used. Additionally, some growers may choose to refrigerate their harvested microgreens if they wish, although this isn’t necessary unless they plan on using them within a few days after harvest.

When it comes to growing containers, soil mixtures, and other supplies needed for successful microgreen production, there are many options available. It’s important to read up on different varieties of microgreens and research what type of environment each one needs in order to thrive before purchasing any supplies. Doing your homework beforehand can save time and money down the line! With proper planning and preparation, anyone can enjoy delicious homegrown microgreens year round!


To conclude, microgreens are a great way to add nutrition and flavor to any meal. They require specific components for growth such as soil and water but also light in order to photosynthesize. You can grow microgreens indoors or outdoors depending on the climate you live in and your space availability. Harvesting them correctly will ensure they stay fresh longer while storing them properly is key for optimal taste when consumed.

But this begs the question: Are microgreens worth it? The answer depends on how much time and effort you’re willing to put into growing these little greens. If you don’t mind spending some extra minutes tending to them, then yes–microgreens are definitely worth it! Not only do they provide added nutrition and vibrancy to dishes, but they can be harvested over multiple weeks so you can enjoy their benefits for an extended period of time.

All in all, if you want to give microgreens a try, go ahead! I’m sure you’ll be pleasantly surprised with the results once you harvest your first batch of homegrown goodness.

Kathy Turner
Kathy Turner
Kathy Turner is the founder of, a popular blog dedicated to helping people become master microgreen growers. Kathy is passionate about helping others learn how to grow the healthiest, most nutrient-rich microgreens. She believes that with the right knowledge and resources, anyone can become a successful microgreen grower. Learn more about Kathy by viewing her full Author Profile.

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