Wednesday, March 21, 2012

What's Growing: Happy Spring, Sprouts

Happy Spring! Spring has officially arrived and my garden is officially declared a new mud wrestling rink so not much is growing outdoors – yet. Garlic is beginning to poke through and yesterday I noticed the first few buds of Rhubarb leaves. Mojo, my mud mop (dog), seems determined to squash anything in his path which does not include the walking path but of course, the main beds.

In my quest to have fresh food year round I purchased a sprouter kit, specifically the Bioset Seed Sprouter from Johnny's. I am amazed! Within days, I have fresh sprouts to top off rice dishes, salads, crackers ... you name it. I'm already on my second batch.

My kit came with a variety of sprouting seeds: broccoli, mustard, mung beans, radish and wheat off the top of my head. Usually I add a tablespoon of seeds in each tray (a chart is also included with measurements as to how many seeds are needed for each variety), stack the trays up and then fill the top reservoir with water. The water slowly fills up the top tray, then trickles down to the next, and finally ends up in a collection tray at the bottom which I then empty. I do this twice a day at least.

Within a couple days, the seeds sprout and fill out. I cannot describe their taste other than wow, zing! These do not taste like any sprouts purchased from the store.

My mushroom kit also shroomed WAY out. I should have probably picked the mushrooms a little earlier (they looked more like mushrooms a few days ago). They look funky now but I ate them anyway – yum! – also incredible flavor. It was dry here and they took a little longer to get started. The company I purchased them from, Back to the Roots, is great. I emailed them a picture asking for help as to why they were not growing and and received a response right away with tips to get them going.

They are Pearl Oyster Mushrooms. Next I'll flip the bag to the other side for a second batch. Let's see if I do a little better with this batch. Hopefully, I'll have picture perfect mushrooms the second time around.

I have started Brassica seeds: Artichokes, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, and Cauliflower. I still do not have a grow light set up, but with temperatures so mild I am using the SUN. I figure the nearby Amish must start their seeds without grow lights, so can I! But I do hope to invest in a set up next year. I am excited to grow Artichokes. I really want to see one of those beautiful flowers. I'm not sure how to harvest Artichokes, will have to read up on that, but this year I will leaf over the Cauliflower heads. Any tips out there?

The newly sprouted seeds look strong and healthy and I hope to have them growing in the Potager soon. These transplants, when larger, should be okay with cooler temperatures. Next month I plan to start Kale, Spinach and Swiss Chard directly in the garden. Can't wait!


  1. Kathy that is amazing and definitely something I may have to try...I started all my cool veggies Sunday and have them under row covers since the weather is going to cool off in a few days...then more planting in a couple of weeks and warmer veggies at the end of May...starting more flowers indoors this is fun! It would be interesting to see how the Amish start seed

  2. Those are just downright fabulous! I bet those mushrooms were delicious!


Thank you for joining me in my garden in the making!

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