How to Sprout Your Own Wheatgrass
Wheatgrass is a very healthy thing to add to one's diet, particularly as part of breakfast. Buying wheatgrass juice or wheatgrass itself is very expensive. However, it is not difficult to grow oneself, and it is fresher, more nutrient packed, and healthier.
Wheatgrass is actually the young shoots of hard winter wheat, the very same plant that makes the best, most gluten-rich bread. Hard winter wheat, also known as wheat berries or wheatgrass seed is available in health food and sometimes the specialty baking section of the supermarket. Organic wheat berries are the best choice, as they will be eaten in their most pure and raw form. Sprouting trays can be purchased for the purpose of growing wheatgrass. They make the process easier because they are made with drainage holes to keep the wheatgrass from being over-watered and rotting. Other recycled plastic containers will work fine, as long as drainage holes are made before using.
For a 16 inch square tray, 2 cups of wheat berries are used. They should be washed through a strainer, and then soaked for 10 hours or overnight in fresh, clean water. They should be drained and rinsed, and soaked again for about 10 hours. This should be repeated until they have been rinsed and soaked 3 times total.
Once they have sprouted little roots, the seed tray should be prepared by spreading a paper towel across the bottom, and then spreading 2 inches of pre-moistened organic potting soil across the surface. The 2 cups of soaked wheatgrass sprouts should be spread evenly across the soil. They should then be lightly pressed into the soil, but not buried. Spray the seeds with a fine mist of water, and cover the top of the tray with a couple layers of newspaper to protect the seeds. The newspaper should not be touching the seeds. Mist the seeds morning and night, for 4 days. At this point, the newspaper can be removed and the tray placed near a window but in indirect/partial sunlight.
It takes about 9-10 days for the sprouts to be ready. They will form a second shoot alongside the primary blade of grass, and that indicates they are ready. Harvest by cutting the wheatgrass with scissors above the root. It can be juiced immediately, or can be stored for a few days in the refrigerator. If one continues to water the wheatgrass, a second harvest can be made of the same tray. Third harvests are often puny and lower in quality.
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