Is spring in the air in your neck of the woods? Some of us may still be getting snow, but I feel a new warmth to the breeze and can hear spring knocking on my door. I’m itching to get outside and feel the sun on my face. This month we have been celebrating everything green; from spinach to plant protein, we are loving how much green is popping up all around us.
So, next on our journey into all things green, we are going to look at GROWING something green. Maybe you live in the city and think this is definitely not in your wheel-house, or maybe you have already declared yourself a “brown-thumb” instead of a “green-thumb.” But we’ve got some ideas that may just get you itching to grow your own food. This is a great activity for kids, young and old alike!
No Dirt Needed
What if I told you it was possible to grow food on your kitchen counter without getting your hands dirty? Well, you can! I’m talking about sprouted food. Sprouting seeds, to be exact. Sprouting seeds start with seeds that have been soaked and then germinate, producing an edible sprout.
Health Benefits of Sprouts
Sprouts are meant to be eaten raw. Usually, a week after germination, the sprout will have the highest concentration and bioavailability of nutrients. Think about it, as a sprout pops out of the ground, it’s getting ready to become a plant, that little sprout needs to have a powerhouse of nutrients in order to grow into a full size plant. So, that tiny sprout is packed with vitamins and minerals our body can use. Sprouts contain (just to name a few):
- Vitamin K, A, C
- Zinc & Enzymes
For a list of benefits you can get from sprouts, ranging from healthy hair to aiding in digestion, see this article.
How to Grow Sprouts
But now on to the fun part; how to grow sprouts!
The process is simple.
- Grab a mason jar or sprouter (no dirt needed). This is a fun activity to do with kids, especially when the sprouts grow so quickly! Purchase a full sprouting kit online.
- Find a full sprouting kit here
- Start with 1/8 cup of seeds such as alfalfa seeds or broccoli seeds or even lentils. (These all sprout well without the use of dirt.)
- Soak your seeds covered with water overnight.
- Drain the water in the morning. It helps to have a mesh top for draining the water, see kit above. Set the jar on its side so the seeds cover the length of the jar.
- Rinse seeds daily until you see sprout activity. It should only take a few days.
- Sprouts can be eaten on salads, sandwiches or by the handful.
- Give yourself a pat on the back, you just grew food!
Here’s to growing or sprouting something green in March!