Trays to Grow Microgreens: Choosing the Right Containers

HomeGrowingTrays to Grow Microgreens: Choosing the Right Containers

To grow microgreens, shallow trays are commonly used. These trays should have good drainage to prevent waterlogging and promote healthy root development. They should also be wide to allow for ample spacing between the seeds. Tray materials can vary, but plastic and recycled materials such as food-grade containers or shallow plant trays are often preferred for their durability and ease of cleaning.

Benefits of Using Microgreen Trays

Growing your own microgreens with specially designed trays has many benefits, so don’t miss out! Microgreen trays are shallow and well-draining, allowing for an even spread of water to the soil mix. This helps ensure that the microgreens receive enough moisture without becoming waterlogged, which can cause root rot or other problems.

These trays also feature a raised edge that helps contain the soil mix and prevents spills while watering. Additionally, they come in a variety of sizes to accommodate any garden space, making them perfect for small urban gardens or larger outdoor spaces.

Using these specialized trays also makes it easier to keep track of how much water your microgreens are receiving. In addition to providing adequate drainage and helping contain soil spillage during watering, most microgreen trays come with built-in irrigation systems—such as cups or tubes—that allow you to accurately measure the amount of water being added each time. This makes it easy to adjust your watering routine based on the specific needs of your plants throughout their growth cycle.

Another benefit of using specialized microgreen trays is that they provide a consistent environment for your plants’ roots to develop in. Unlike regular planters or containers which can vary widely in size and shape, these trays all have the same dimensions so you know exactly what kind of soil mix will work best in them for optimal growth results. Furthermore, since they come pre-filled with a lightweight potting mix specifically designed for microgreen cultivation, you don’t have to worry about creating one yourself from scratch—which can be tricky if you’re unfamiliar with this type of gardening technique.

Finally, these specialized microgreen trays make harvesting simpler too! By having shallower containers than traditional planters, it means that there’s less digging involved when collecting mature greens; instead, just cut off what you need at ground level and leave any remaining shoots intact until next harvest time rolls around again!

Types of Trays for Growing Microgreens

If you’re looking to start growing microgreens, you’ll need a tray to get started. There are two main types of trays available: plastic and biodegradable.

Plastic trays are durable and long-lasting, while biodegradable trays are made from renewable materials that break down over time. Each type of tray has its own advantages and disadvantages when it comes to growing microgreens, so it’s important to consider your needs before making a decision.

Plastic Trays

When it comes to growing microgreens, plastic trays are perfect for providing shallow, well-draining soil while still allowing your plants plenty of space to grow.

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Plastic trays are great for deep watering since they don’t absorb water like other materials such as wood or metal.

The design of plastic trays also helps block out light from below the surface and prevents the growth of weeds between the rows, which is important if you’re looking for a low maintenance microgreen garden.

Furthermore, plastic trays can be reused multiple times over long periods of time, making them an economical choice for those looking to start a microgreen garden on a budget.

Biodegradable Trays

You can reduce your environmental impact while still having a successful microgreen garden by using biodegradable trays. Biodegradable trays are made from sustainable materials, such as straw, paper or cardboard. These containers break down over time, returning much of their mass back to the soil that you are growing your microgreens in. This helps to improve the soil quality and fertility which leads to better results when you grow microgreens.

It also eliminates the need for plastic trays which can end up in landfills and require more resources to produce than biodegradable ones do. When choosing a container for your microgreen garden, it is important to make sure that it is shallow and well-draining with holes at the bottom so excess water doesn’t accumulate in the tray. The material should be sturdy enough that it won’t collapse when wet but light enough that it can easily be moved around if necessary.

Biodegradable trays provide an ideal solution for this problem since they are both lightweight and strong enough to hold up during watering without damaging themselves or your plants. With proper care and maintenance, these trays will help keep your microgreen garden healthy while also reducing its environmental impact.

Factors to Consider When Choosing a Tray

When it comes to choosing a tray for growing microgreens, two important factors to consider are size and drainage.

The size of the tray will determine the amount of microgreens that can be grown at one time, so it’s important to ensure you choose a tray large enough for your needs.

Additionally, proper drainage is essential for successful growth. Look for trays with pre-drilled holes in the bottom or sides to allow excess water to drain away.


Smaller trays are great for growing microgreens; they don’t take up much space and they drain well. Lightweight trays made of plastic or metal are perfect for this, as they can easily be moved around to get the most sunlight. Shallow trays with low sides will also make it easier to water and harvest your greens.

Larger trays are also suitable for growing microgreens, but you should keep in mind that additional soil may be required if the tray is too deep, which could affect nutrient levels and drainage. Additionally, a larger tray may require more frequent watering due to increased evaporation rates.

Ultimately, size matters when choosing a tray for growing microgreens – choose one that fits your space and meets your needs.


For optimal drainage, choose trays that are shallow and lightweight, allowing for easy movement and ample sunlight. This is important because shallow trays allow excess water to quickly run off the tray while keeping soil in place. Having a lightweight tray allows you to move it around easily without disturbing the soil or the microgreen plants themselves.

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Furthermore, if you’re looking to grow your microgreens outdoors, having a lighter weight tray will help ensure that it doesn’t blow away in strong winds. Water retention is also an important factor when selecting trays for microgreen growth. Soil should be well-drained and have good aeration to prevent waterlogging and erosion of topsoil.

Look for trays with drainage holes or slots at the bottom so that any excess water can escape quickly before it damages delicate root systems. To further reduce soil erosion, consider using mulch on top of your tray’s surface when growing outdoor microgreens. This will absorb extra moisture during heavy rainfall and also help control weed growth by blocking light from reaching weed seeds.

Tips for Choosing the Right Tray

Choose trays that are specifically designed for microgreen growth – shallow and well-draining – to get the best results in your home garden. To select the right tray, consider these factors:

  • Growing Methods: Choose a tray with enough depth to accommodate the type of growing method you plan to use. Soilless methods (such as hydroponics) require less soil than traditional potting methods, meaning they need shallower trays. Don’t forget about the type of seed you’ll be using; some varieties require more space between them during germination than others.
  • Soil Quality: Make sure your chosen container has plenty of holes for drainage; this is essential for preventing root rot caused by excess moisture in poorly-drained soils. If you plan on reusing trays, look for ones made from materials that won’t break down when exposed to water or soil over time.
  • Light Exposure: Consider where you’ll be keeping your microgreens; if they’ll be placed near a window or patio door with direct sunlight, choose a material that won’t fade easily and provide enough insulation from heat sources like radiators and air conditioners. A rain cover may also be necessary if there’s potential for heavy rain exposure, depending on where your trays are kept.
  • Water Needs: For best results, make sure your chosen tray has an adequate size reservoir at least 2 inches deep so it can hold enough water for all stages of growth without overflowing or becoming overly wet. You may also want to consider investing in an automatic irrigation system that can monitor how much water is needed by each individual tray and adjust accordingly throughout the season.

No matter what type of microgreens you’re growing or where they’re going to be kept, choosing the right tray is essential for achieving good yields and healthy plants. Taking into account all these factors will help ensure success in any home gardening project!

Preparing the Tray for Planting

Once you’ve chosen the perfect tray, it’s time to get it ready for planting. How will you prepare it for success?

The first step is to choose a soil that is nutrient-rich and well-draining, such as a pre-mixed soil blend specifically designed for microgreens. Make sure your soil has enough fertility to support healthy growth, and consider adding fertilizer or compost if necessary.

Next, add just enough water so that the soil is moist but not soggy. Too much water can lead to root rot and other disease problems, so be careful not to overdo it. You want the water depth in the tray to be shallow—just deep enough for the seeds or seedlings to take root without drowning them in too much liquid.

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Once your tray is filled with soil and watered appropriately, you’re ready to level it off before planting your seeds or seedlings. This helps ensure even coverage of light and moisture throughout the container as they grow.

Finally, you’re ready to plant! Place your seeds directly into the top layer of dampened soil at consistent intervals throughout the tray, then lightly cover them with more of the dampened mix so they are completely covered yet still have access to air circulation.

Now that you know how to prepare your trays for growing microgreens successfully, all that’s left is caring for them properly during their growth period so they reach maturity as quickly and healthily as possible!

Planting the Seeds

Now it’s time to get planting, and you’ll want to hit the ground running! Depending on what seed types you’ve chosen, your irrigation system may need to be adjusted.

If you’re growing smaller seeds like radish or lettuce, for example, then they’ll require more water than larger ones such as buckwheat or sunflower. You can use a watering can or spray bottle with gentle misting if necessary. Make sure that the soil is damp but not soggy before planting the seeds evenly across the tray. Fill in any gaps between them with additional dirt to ensure even coverage and prevent overcrowding of the plants once they sprout up.

When planting microgreens, make sure you’re using shallow trays specifically designed for this purpose. Deeper trays tend to collect too much water and result in root rot. After sowing your seeds, give them a light sprinkle of water over the surface so that it’s just enough to moisten them but not enough to move them around from their original placement. You can also cover the trays with plastic wrap if necessary; this’ll help keep moisture levels consistent while allowing air circulation at the same time.

Once all of your seeds are planted in the tray, place it in an area where it’ll get plenty of sunlight and won’t be disturbed by animals or pests. Microgreens require direct sunlight for most of their growth period so make sure they have access to at least 6-8 hours per day depending on your climate and seasonality. Water regularly as needed; usually 2-3 times a week should suffice unless otherwise indicated for specific seed types such as wheatgrass which needs more frequent irrigation.

Monitoring your microgreen crops is essential during their early stages. Look out for signs of wilting or discoloration which could indicate over-watering or insufficient drainage from inadequate soil preparation prior to planting. Proper care throughout these early stages will ensure healthy growth into mature plants later on down the line!

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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