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Micro Greens: Grow Your Own in Days, Any Time of Year

Beet tops, collards, arugula, oh my!
Beet tops, collards, arugula, oh my!
Nicole Whittington

What's so great about micro greens? Well, they are good for you. But our favorite thing is that they're super easy to grow, offering instant gardner's gratification for green and black thumbs alike.

See also: - All Your Phoenix Fall Gardening Questions Answered by Tomato Pro Suzanne Vilardi

What's that you say? Anybody can grow them? Yeah, anybody. And they grow just about anywhere. In days.

What are micro greens, exactly, you ask? Micro greens are any lettuce, salad green or herb grown or harvested while still in a micro state. That simple. It's culinary genius, really. Because we all know everything is cuter when mini ( for proof see: http://pinterest.com/idekumiko/mini-mini-mini-everything-/), why not jump in on this craze? After all, it's cheaper than buying potted plants of basil at Trader Joe's when trying to be a conscious consumer, or whatever.

Remember, the plant has no way of generating new growth, so if you want more micro greens, plant new seeds. The best season for greens is generally fall to early winter, but since micro greens can easily be grown indoors, you can plant them all year long.

Here's the lowdown: You can spend just $2.69 for a packet of seeds, versus $2/ounce or $30/pound for this specialty mini-garnish.

Here's how you do it:

 

1. Buy your seed of choice ( we like the micro greens mild mix from Botanical Interests )

2. Sow outdoors or in a container with plenty of access to sunshine indoors. Since they're being harvested super young, they do not need a lot of space! They will sprout perfectly when planted about 1/8" into soil. (We literally sprinkled the seeds on top of our soil then sprinkled just enough soil on top to cover the seeds.)

3. Water once a day and watch them sprout within the first 3 days.

4. Begin harvest after the second sprout of leaves (the first set of leaves are just seed leaves, and do not resemble the leaves of the plants true species). Keep in mind that micro greens are harvested before the seeds develop enough roots fro stability, so you are snipping everything but the very end.

5. Garnish away!

Note: You can sprinkle their seeds in between rows of produce in your backyard garden or toss them in a planter on your work desk. Live in an apartment? Great. Put them in your windowsill.

Not only do they offer the satisfaction of having grown your own food (from seed, nonetheless!), but they're guaranteed to impress all of your foodie friends. Micro greens make a fantastic garnish on just about...anything, and they pack a mean punch of flavor. No wonder chefs around the Valley are sprucing up dishes such as kale salads, crab cakes and scallops with petite yet flavorful greens.

Can you tell we're super pumped on micro greens?!

Harvested fresh from the garden.
Harvested fresh from the garden.
Nicole Whittington

Hop to it, and feel free to hashtag Chow Bella on your cutesie mini micro green instagram pics. We'd love to see them!

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