Growing alfalfa microgreens in soil involves spreading the seeds evenly on moistened soil, pressing them gently to ensure good seed-to-soil contact, and providing consistent moisture and light. It’s important to keep the soil adequately moist but not waterlogged to prevent mold or rot. With the right conditions, alfalfa microgreens can be ready for harvest within 7-14 days.
What You'll Learn
Gather up your supplies – a container, potting soil, and alfalfa seeds – so you can get started growing your microgreens!
The first step is to choose the right container. Look for something shallow and wide that will give the roots plenty of room to spread out. Make sure it has drainage holes in the bottom as well.
Potting soil is also important when growing alfalfa microgreens in soil since it provides a good blend of nutrients and aeration for the plants’ roots. For an extra boost, consider adding some fertilizer to the potting soil before planting.
Last but not least, make sure you have enough alfalfa seeds so you can spread them evenly across the top of the soil.
Once all your supplies are ready, you’ll be able to begin planting your microgreens!
Prepare the Soil
Begin preparing your soil to cultivate a lush environment for alfalfa microgreens. Before you get started, make sure that you’ve pre-soaked the seeds overnight in room temperature water; this’ll help them grow more quickly and evenly when planted.
Additionally, it’s important to adjust the pH of the soil so that it’s between 6.0 and 7.0 for optimal growth of the microgreens. Use an inexpensive pH test kit to measure how acidic or alkaline your soil is. Adjust the pH by adding lime if necessary, and test again until the desired level is achieved.
Once you’ve adjusted the pH of your soil, it’s time to add fertilizer. Alfalfa plants need a steady supply of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium; however, be careful not to overdo it with any one nutrient as too much can stunt their growth and even kill them. A balanced organic fertilizer such as fish emulsion or seaweed extract should do the trick! Alternatively, you could also use compost or aged manure for extra organic matter in your soil which helps retain moisture levels and provide a good habitat for beneficial microbes.
When planting alfalfa microgreens in soil directly, sow several seeds about 1/4 inch deep into each pot or tray filled with moistened potting mix or seed starting mix and press down lightly on top to ensure good contact with the soil surface. Lightly mist with water from a spray bottle until all seeds are evenly dampened; this’ll help speed up germination rates significantly! Place trays in an area where they can receive plenty of indirect sunlight during active growing periods—about 8-10 hours per day—and keep consistently moist but not wet at all times.
Plant the Seeds
Once the soil is prepared, it’s time to start planting the seeds. First, choose a seed variety that’s suited for your environment and climate. Select alfalfa microgreen seeds with good soil nutrition content as this’ll ensure healthy plants. When purchasing a variety of seeds, read labels to make sure they’re suitable for growing in soil.
Once you’ve selected your desired seed variety, spread them evenly across the surface of the soil. Make sure not to overcrowd them as this can inhibit growth and cause competition between plants for moisture and nutrients. Watering regularly is essential when growing alfalfa microgreens in soil, as dry conditions can cause wilting and eventual death of plants.
After planting the seeds, lightly water them until damp but not saturated, then wait several days for germination to occur before watering again. Depending on the weather conditions and temperature outside, you may need to water more frequently than usual – if so, try using an automated irrigation system or drip hose to provide consistent amounts of water over time without needing human intervention. Light also plays an important role when growing alfalfa microgreens in soil; it helps promote photosynthesis which helps create energy needed by plants for growth and development.
Place your planted pots where they’ll receive direct sunlight during daytime hours or use artificial lights such as LED or fluorescent lamps placed close enough to your pot so that leaves are exposed directly underneath them throughout their entire lifespan – this’ll help ensure maximum growth potential from your alfalfa microgreen crop! Finally, keep an eye out for pests such as aphids or other insects which may be attracted to your alfalfa microgreen crop; if observed take action quickly with either organic pest control methods or chemical insecticides depending on what works best in your situation.
With proper care given during each stage of its life cycle from planting through harvest time – you should have a successful harvest of delicious fresh alfalfa microgreens!
You need to water your alfalfa microgreens regularly for optimal growth. First, consider the soil composition that you’re using for your microgreen bed. Loose, nutrient-rich soils can hold much more moisture than denser soils, so keep an eye out for signs of dryness if you’ve chosen a heavier composition.
You want to keep the top layer of soil damp at all times so the seeds are able to germinate and grow properly. Be sure to adjust your watering schedule based on the weather conditions outside. If it’s hot and sunny, you may need to water more frequently than during cooler days or cloudy spells.
Also make sure that you’re using lukewarm water when watering your alfalfa microgreens; cold water can shock their delicate roots and cause them to die off prematurely. Try not to overwater, which can lead to mold growth as well as root rot in some cases.
To check if your plants have received enough moisture, just stick your finger into the top inch or two of soil – if it feels dry then it’s time for another drink! Make sure you also use a spray bottle set on its lowest setting when applying water directly onto the seedlings themselves; too much pressure could damage their fragile leaves and stems.
When in doubt about how much water your alfalfa microgreens need, err on the side of caution and give them just a little bit extra – better safe than sorry! With consistent care and attention (and a little luck), your alfalfa microgreens will be flourishing in no time!
Provide your alfalfa microgreens with plenty of light for optimal growth – they’ll thank you!
While microgreens don’t require a lot of sunlight to thrive, they still need at least 8-10 hours of minimal light per day. This can be achieved either through natural sunlight or artificial lighting.
Artificial lighting is best accomplished using LED grow lights, which are designed to provide plants with the adequate amount of light needed for them to develop and grow healthily. Place the LED lights about 12 inches above your alfalfa microgreen seedlings and leave it on for at least 8 hours per day.
If using natural sunlight, ensure that your seedlings get direct sunlight in the mornings and indirect sunshine in the afternoons; this will allow them to absorb all the nutrients they need without getting scorched by too much heat. With both sources of light, make sure you keep an eye on your seedlings so that they’re not exposed to too much or too little light; if left unchecked, both can cause serious damage to your alfalfa microgreens!
Using a combination of artificial lighting and natural sunshine is ideal when growing alfalfa microgreens as it provides them with all the necessary nutrients while also helping them stay healthy and vibrant.
It’s important to remember that even though these tiny greens don’t require a lot of sun exposure, adequate light is essential for their development and growth – so be sure to give your alfalfa microgreens all the love (and sunshine!) that they need!
Harvest and Enjoy!
Once your alfalfa microgreens have grown to the desired size, it’s time to harvest and enjoy! Start by cutting the stems 1/4-1/2 inch above soil level with sharp scissors. Make sure you don’t cut too close or you may damage the root system.
After harvesting, rinse off any debris, then pat them dry with a paper towel. Alfalfa microgreens are great all by themselves or in salads, sandwiches, soups, or smoothies for added flavor and texture.
Alfalfa microgreens are highly nutritious and provide numerous health benefits. They contain high levels of vitamins A and C as well as iron and calcium. Eating just one cup of alfalfa microgreens can provide up to 10% of your daily Vitamin A needs! They also contain antioxidants that fight against free radicals in the body which can lead to disease if left unchecked.
Alfalfa microgreens have a mild nutty flavor that pairs well with many dishes. For an easy snack try adding some chopped alfalfa microgreens onto toast with cream cheese or top off tacos with freshly harvested greens for a delicious crunchy topping! You can even add them into salads for a nutritional boost without compromising on taste.
Storage is an important factor when it comes to maintaining freshness and getting the most out of your harvest. Once harvested, wrap them tightly in plastic wrap or store in airtight containers before refrigerating; this will help keep them fresh for up to two weeks! With proper storage techniques, you’ll be able to enjoy your alfalfa microgreen bounty every day until they’re gone!