Microgreens & Soaking Seeds - When & Why | Bootstrap Farmer

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From our How to Grow Microgreens Series

Transcript is below.

Nick & Nathan from On the Acre in Houston, TX discuss the soaking microgreen seeds for better germination and discuss their method of soaking and straining seeds.  For more advanced microgreens business training, visit our Urban Farm Academy Business of Microgreens course. 



Pre-measuring our seeds, we put them in these containers up here the Rubbermaid containers and fill them with water and let them sit for six to eight hours.  Anything over that reach happens so we let them sit for six to eight hours anything over that depending on your climate you have to begin to worry about things growing in the water and further washing or rinsing your seeds.

If you do it for that period of time we just dump them into a strainer after that rinse them off and spread them across our pre-soiled trays and that would be the entirety of soaking process. So the way to determine if a seed needs to be soaked or not scientifically is a lot of seeds have a coating around them that prevents germination until they've been moist for a certain amount of time and this chemical it actually dissolves into the water and allows the seed to germinate.

So things like peas and beets and chard they they all have this preventative chemical and it's an inhibitor that you want to make sure that you soak long enough to get that inhibitor fully diluted so that the seed will actually germany and we it's typically larger seeds things like mr. pea tendrils, sunflowers. Seeds that are inside of holes like beets and chard they actually have multiple seeds inside of each one. In order to get them to split open they have to be softened by the water.

Otherwise even if the seed tries to germinate it's not going to be able to do anything because it can't get out of the out of its hole. If you don't soak your seeds they will germinate just not as much. Some will come up it's not like if you plant a tray nothing is gonna come up if you don't soak, so it just helps you get a better germination. So without soaking you make it 10% whereas with a proper so can you you'll probably get around 95%.

So the process of scarification is where you take a seed and you use an abrasive surface to scratch it and this kind of it allows the water to sneak in past the inhibitor basically and allow it to germinate it's an easier or I wouldn't say it's easier it's a different way to cause germination to occur in seeds that are hard to germinate. We actually just ordered our hummingbird seeds and everywhere I read about them they wrote they say that you need to use scarification to get them to germinate in their desert plants so that makes sense they would need to wait for a really good ring in order to grow. {Blank} {Blank}

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