Also known as living greens and micro greens, micro herbs are often grown in pots and picked before maturity. Tangy in flavour because they are picked early, these baby greens consist of lettuce, mustard greens, fennel, coriander, celery, purple radishes...just about any herb or vegetable that produces leaves. Requiring very little maintenance, micro herbs can adorn the recipes of even the most novice gardeners. Better still, weather is never a problem for these tasty salad toppers that grow perfectly indoors.
Poke holes in the bottom of margarine tubs with an awl (pointed spike). Container depth is not important when growing micro herbs, but the presence of drainage holes is.
Line the bottom of the tubs with a 1-inch layer of vermiculite. Scatter your chosen herb seeds over the vermiculite growth medium. Micro herbs grow best in a dense environment, so sprinkle the seeds generously.
Fill a baking tray half full with water and set the margarine tubs inside. The vermiculite in the tubs will draw the water up through the drainage holes without drowning the seeds.
Allow the margarine tubs to sit in the baking trays until the vermiculite is visibly damp. Remove the tubs from the baking tray, setting each one on a dry saucer to collect residual water.
Set the micro herb seeds in an area that receives bright, indirect sunlight or under a grow light that will provide the same type of lighting. Keep the temperature in the room at 23.9 degrees Celsius or above. If this is not possible, set the tubs on a plant heating pad.
Continue the watering process as the seeds germinate and continue to grow. Continue to provide your micro herbs with adequate sunlight and warmth as they grow.
Harvest the micro herbs by snipping them down to the soil line with a sharp scissor. It is best to harvest micro herbs once they develop their first set of true leaves, which are actually their second set of leaves.
- Remember to keep your micro herbs warm. Micro herbs grown in a cool environment will take longer to germinate and grow.
- Do not pour water directly onto your micro herb seeds or plants. Too much water can prevent germination and cause the roots of the young herbs to rot.