Can I Sprout Basil Microgreens?


Can I Sprout Basil Microgreens?

The idea of sprouting basil microgreens might come across as impossible due to the nature of the plant. Growing basil microgreens is a delicate procedure, and you could lose a whole batch if you don’t handle them properly. 

However, the answer to the question is “Yes, and why not?” Basil microgreens are even better sprouted yourself. They are easy to grow and can be grown indoors. To constantly have a fresh supply of these very healthy plants, there’s no harm in sprouting them yourself. It’s well known that Basil sprouts are highly nutritious just after harvest and to avoid always having to put up with “not really” fresh Basil, you can grow yours. 

Basil Microgreens: What Are They?

Basil microgreens are grown out of basil seeds which are very small seeds. Basil seeds are mucilaginous, meaning that a gel-like material called mucilage develops when the seeds get wet. Many fragrant essential oil components are found in basil leaves. They unleash those strong aromas when you bruise, rub or cut the leaves. In the mint family, basil is a herb. It adds flavour to meals, and health benefits can be offered by its nutrients. 

Various researches have shown that basil microgreens contain up to 3-4 times more of the nutrients found in mature basil.

Basil microgreens are usually termed “very difficult to sprout” which is not completely true. With the steps we will be showing you, you’ll have your freshly grown basil sprouts ready to spice up your meal and taste buds. The microgreen variety of basil has a better flavour than the mature leaves and lacks the bad aftertaste the older basil can usually have.

Best Sprouting Method for Basil Microgreens

The best methods of sprouting basil microgreens include:

  • Using a Baby Blanket
  • Using unbleached heavy paper towel
  • Using unbleached coffee filter
  • Using unglazed clay surface
  • Using soil

How to Sprout Basil Microgreens

You can add basils in small amounts to the commonly sprouted seeds (lentils, alfalfa, etc.) in a sprouting jar. 

  • Add the basil into the seed mix after soaking the other seeds. 

Note: Avoid soaking the basil seeds. Also, be careful not to add too many seeds, as basils have the tendency to be gelatinous.

  • Dampen the bottom of an unglazed clay pot or a tray lined with a baby blanket, unbleached paper towel, coffee filter, or dirt/soil.
  • Sprinkle with dry seeds gently, making allowance for some space between the seeds.
  • Sprinkle with water gently, not so wet that it gets too damp.
  • Preserve humidity by coating seeds loosely with transparent plastic.
  • Spray gently with water twice a day. Ensure that it stays damp but not wet.
  • Sprouts may be rinsed under a slow-flowing tap once you feel that they are stable.  
  • Your sprouts will be ready in 14 days or so. 

Benefits of Sprouting Basil Microgreens

Sprouting your own Basil microgreens is a very exciting, educating and greatly rewarding experience, adventurous if I must say. 

You Get to Enjoy Fresh Green Veggies

If you are a vegetarian and you want your Basil microgreens fresh, tasty and without fertilisers, you should grow yours. You can be sure of the veggies you grow yourself and starting to sprout your own isn’t as expensive as when you compared always going to the grocery store to buy them every time you need them in a dish. 

Sprouting Basil Microgreens is a Rewarding Recreational Activity 

Nutrition, fun, and creativity are all yours when you begin to sprout yours. For me, it is the decorative touch that potted plants give to my kitchen. Just having my own Basil microgreens plants growing at my window gives my kitchen the homely feeling I love.

Sprouting Basil Microgreens Can Make You a Lot of Money 

You can sprout your basil microgreens for sale! The good thing about Basil microgreens is that they do not have a long growth cycle (although they have a longer period than other microgreens), and if you are planning to get income from these, you will be making your profits at short intervals. 

Knowing that they are in high demand because of their nutritional value, you don’t have to bother about not making sales. Growing basil sprouts doesn’t use up so much space. You can carry this out using just your indoor space. 

How to Grow Basil Microgreens Yourself

It’s always advised to people to purchase common Genovese basil or lemon basil seeds which are not hard to find and a bit easy to grow in your home.

Unlike most people would think, you don’t need a lot of tools to grow micro basil indoors. What you basically need is a pot or container, very good and fertile soil, water, light and high-quality basil seeds. You can go through this video for more information.

https://youtu.be/J8DjJGR3wW8

Here are the steps to follow to sprout your own basil microgreens:

The Blackout Stage for Your Basil Seeds

To begin, apply a potting mix to the planting pot. 

Put your basil seeds on top of your potting mix and make sure you put them evenly. 

Proceed to wrap them with a wet paper towel and move the pot or container to a warm location, not a hot one. 

Basil species need warmth to do well. Always make sure to keep the paper towel and the soil wet until the basil seeds begin to sprout, dry soil is not good for a growing basil microgreen. Only when the plant germinates can you remove the wet paper towel. It’s very well known that basil takes a  longer time to germinate than most microgreens. You have to carefully nurse and watch your plant till it germinates. 

The Light Stage for Your Basil Seeds

On the 4th day, you will notice that seedlings have shown signs of germination, now you can unwrap them. 

Examine them if they are properly grown. 

Your next move is to transfer the pot or container to a sunny and warm location. It’s time to let the plant receive light. 

Sometimes the seedlings may have not germinated well enough. You can wrap them again in a moist paper towel and wet the soil and check back in 2-3 days. 

You may choose to use a grow light as your source of light at this point. The most important thing to consider in this stage is providing enough light for the plant. Place your basil greens where they will get enough light which they need throughout the day.  10-12 hours of light each day is satisfactory for the growth of your plant.

Time to Water Your Basil Seeds

The last and final care that the basil microgreens will need is watering. They must be watered frequently because there’s not sufficient soil in the pot to hold water for more than 3 days. 

Experts say that the best time to water your plants is in the morning. Advisably use a spray bottle to water your plants. 

Most times people make the mistake of watering the plants from the top. Always water from the bottom. Try not to over-water the plants. You can weigh the pot when it’s dry and when it’s wet. 

Using the weight to determine if the plant needs watering or not is one of the best methods to avoid over-watering. 

Watering from the bottom helps keep the leaves and stems dry so that there won’t be any possibility of disease caused by dampness.

Time to Harvest Your Basil Plants

You can harvest your plants once you notice they have grown to about 2 inches in height. 

Basil microgreens have a growth cycle of about 12- 20 days. Wait until the true leaves are well developed before you harvest them, this will make them have a better taste. The usual time to harvest your basil microgreens is when they have four or more leaves. 

Cut the shoots using scissors only above ground level. Many forms are going to regrow and can be cut several times.

Once the harvest is done, serve and eat as soon as you can in order to enjoy the freshness of your harvest and also the nutritional value.

Health Benefits of Microgreens

The health benefits of microgreens are so numerous. Scientists have proven that microgreens can provide key nutrients in a very healthy way. Microgreens have become very well known as health foods. 

Microgreens are really baby vegetables and herbs that are a gift to us for good health from mother earth. Use organic or sprouting seeds that haven’t been treated with chemicals including fungicides if you want to use healthy seeds. 

There are microorganisms present because microgreens grow in a seed raising mix, and they help feed the plant and improve the value of nutrients. The health benefit is because they are not cooked but consumed fresh. As a plus to their nutritional value, they will add flavour, fun and colour to your dishes especially when used as a garnish.

A Good Source of Vitamins For Fighting Disease 

They are known to be very rich in nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, and fibre. Most of these nutrients they produce can help with preventing lots of diseases, help boost mental health, weight management and even physical health and well-being. 

As a Source of Antioxidants 

The antioxidant content of microgreens is another plus to its benefits. We know how important antioxidants are to our bodies. They help our bodies remove free radicals which result from both natural processes and environmental additions like pollutants from the air or water and these are likely to cause cell damage and in the long run cause cancer. 

As Dietary Supplements 

Researches have shown that microgreens are suitable for providing additional nutrients to some special groups of people. Some microgreens usually have low potassium content and this is useful for people with kidney disease. Also as a vegetarian, you can spice up your meals with these lifesavers. You can click on this link to read more about the best types of microgreens to grow. 

So, there you have it! Go ahead and have fun sprouting those basil seeds using the steps we’ve given you. Don’t forget to drop your thoughts in the comments section below. 

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