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Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Lessons Learned in a Rainy Spring and Glorious Beet Microgreens


I promised to share hints…well each week is a great learning experience.

With all the rain we have had these past weeks on Kauai, I have had to be very cautious with any watering. The plants are sucking up moisture from the air!!! With this constant moisture, be sure your tray of greens have good air circulation, and only water them when the soil feels dry.
Also, in addition to cleaning the trays as we went over in class, I now wash them thoroughly as usual and once in a while, after washing, I dilute non-cholrine bleach with water (1:10) and soak the trays in it for 10-15 minutes or I scrub them while in that mix, rinse them well and let them air dry thoroughly. This will help prevent any undesired growth. If you see discolored leaves ( little brown marks --mainly with sunflowers) or areas of soil that are too moist and may appear to be either very dark or have a sort of white cottony appearance (not like little root hairs), remove that section and consider throwing out that tray. I have only had this happen a couple of times in over a year…just a word for the wise.
BEETS! Georgous beet microgreens:
I am happy to report that my efforts with beets are improving. I have learned that they do better if I allow them to fully sprout in the sprouting jar (maybe a ¼ “ or more) …not all do at the same time…but I wait till most have sprouted rinsing them twice a day and draining at an angle in between out of direct sun light. (see my book for new information)
Then, I lay them on dampened soil, press them down lightly and mist them. Finally, I just stretch out Press ‘n Seal (in which I have put at a number of holes or slits) and attach it to each end of the tray, but not the sides…to allow more air. The beets do better when covered with 1/8" of soil before covering all with a dampened paper towel. (They kept trying to attach to the towel…) In a couple of days, they have rooted, and once they start coming up, I take off the cover. In between, planting and uncovering, you need to check the soil  both a.m. and p.m .to be sure it is just a bit moist.
Happy gardening!

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