Growing Sprouts & Microgreens
They take up minimal space, use little water, are quick and easy to grow and most importantly packed with nutrients: they're nature's superfoods, Sprouts and Microgreens!
What is the difference between Sprouts and Microgreens?
The main difference between Sprouts and Microgreens is the stage of the growing cycle in which you consume them.
Sprouts are eaten when the seed has germinated but before the leaves have formed - you can eat the whole plant, seed and all.
Microgreens, on the other hand, are eaten once the first two leaves have formed - with these, you eat the stem and the leaves, but not the roots or seed.
How do you grow Sprouts and Microgreens?
Sprouts and Microgreens are some of the easiest foods to grow. You simply need seeds, water, and a growing container, and within as little as four days you can be eating your harvest. Grown indoors, they're just perfect for Winter!
How to Grow Sprouts
Growing in a Mr Fothergill’s Kitchen Seed Sprouter:
- Spread about 1 tablespoon of seeds in one or more of the four clear plastic trays.
- Stack the clear trays on top of the bottom tray.
- Pour enough water into the top tray to cover the outlet. This will commence the siphoning action and water will drain down through each of the trays and outlets.
- When finished draining, empty any excess water from the bottom tray. The water that stays in the clear trays is enough to provide the necessary humidity for successful seed germination.
- Water in this way at least 2-3 times each day.
To view our Sprouter FAQ please click here.
Growing in a jar:
Place about 1 tablespoon of seeds in a large jar or similar container. Cover the opening of the container with a fine clean cloth and secure with a rubber band.
Add enough warm water to completely cover the seeds and soak overnight at room temperature. Next day, pour off excess water through the mesh cloth. Add fresh water to
thoroughly rinse and drain. Rinse and drain sprouts at least twice a day.
How to grow Microgreens
Microgreens, often called Vegetable Confetti are an exciting, colourful gourmet alternative to sprouting and very popular amongst gourmet chefs. They are halfway in size between sprouts and baby greens, harvested usually within 2 weeks of sowing. They are commonly grown in seedling trays and differ from sprouts in that they are grown in sunlight and harvested with scissors when there are two or more true leaves.
Microgreens include many of the same leafy greens as those used for salad mixes but are cut at a smaller stage; but also more unique varieties that are chosen for their colour, flavour and texture. They are eaten as thin, delicate plants - as miniature variations on salad greens and herbs. They provide texture and colour when used as garnish, or exciting flavours when used as part of salad mixes. Microgreens are both healthy and a taste sensation.
Growing in a Mr Fothergill’s Microgreens Tray:
- Fill the clear plastic container with water and place the black growing tray on top.
- Place a thin sheet of tissue paper on the growing tray, sprinkling your seeds onto the paper.
- Place in a light and warm position but keep away from direct sunlight.
- Spray the seeds 2-3 times a day with a fine mist of water until roots develop. Cover with foil to keep moist.
- Once roots reach the water in the bottom container, spraying and foil are no longer required. Keep the water topped up and refreshed. You can also add liquid fertiliser to promote strong and healthy growth.
- Harvest the seedlings in 7-14 days by cutting just above the seed.
Growing in soil:
- Fill a seedling tray or plant pots with quality soil mix and firm down gently.
- Sow the seeds thinly and cover with a fine layer of soil.
- Keep the soil moist but not too wet. Add liquid fertiliser for strong and healthy growth.
- Harvest the seedlings in 7-14 days by cutting at the bottom of the stem.
Can I grow normal seeds as sprouts?
No, Normal garden seed varieties do not go through microbiological testing like the Sprouts Alive seeds do. This testing is important because you will consume both the plant and the seed itself, and we want to ensure the seeds don’t carry pathogens like salmonella or e-coli. However, you can grow normal garden seeds as microgreens, as then you will consume just the plant and not the seed.
Can I feed sprouts to my animals?
Yes, indeed you can! Sprouts are just as healthy and delicious for animals as they are to humans. Particularly birds like budgies and chickens absolutely love all types of sprouts. For dogs we recommend varieties like clover, alfalfa, broccoli, lentils & mung beans. Just grind the sprouts in a food processor before mixing them into the dog food. We all know that cats love cat grass but wheatgrass is also good for them. If your cat won’t eat the wheat as sprouts (seed and all), grow them as microgreens so they can chew on the leaves. Wheatgrass is also excellent for little critters like rabbits, hamsters, and guinea pigs.