Hey, everyone, we’re back again with another episode about the microgreens. Today we want to talk to you about what kind of soil does it take to grow microgreens and we are going to visit that a little bit. Yesterday we talked about the nutritional value of the microgreens and those two are very much connected with the soil and the nutritional value.
But, first, I want to show you something that I come to quite often. I’m going to turn the camera around so you can read it. It’s the Bismarck Community Gardens and people come here all over the city to garden. Earlier, there was a mother with a couple of boys out here watering the garden. There was a man over there tending to a garden. They’re actually looking pretty good right now. A lot of things going on here that we teach not to do, which you can see as far as tillage, and then they try to cover it with grass. But, the city actually comes in and tills all this up in the spring and then you can, actually, rent a spot to plant a garden.
It’s pretty exciting. Like I said, it looks pretty good right now, but you get a little further on in the season and it’ll start looking where people, you can tell, are already starting to tire and they’re deciding that loading all this stuff and coming down here to garden in a community garden is a lot of work. We’ll keep an update on this. We’ll come back here in another month or so and then another month after that and you’ll see the landscape change. Some gardens will look good, some will look not so good.
So, back to this soil. We talked a little bit about yesterday… And I’m a little shaky here because I’m on the road and I forgot my tripod, so I apologize for that. But, we talked a little bit about the nutritional value of microgreens. Now that’s where it comes into play where you wouldn’t have to go out and actually rent a community garden if you didn’t have a space. You could do microgreen gardening on your countertop, on your tabletop, no matter where you’re at. You can do it on your shelves and you can raise more nutritious food than you can in a community garden like this and it all comes from the soil.
We’re going to be doing some testing with that and show you the difference in the soil, what it makes for the nutritional value, not only of microgreens, but maybe some other crops, as well. But, our focus is going to be on microgreens.
To start out with the soil, the first media that you can use, or the medium, I like to call it media, which is a garden soil or a potting soil. There aren’t a lot of choices in the store. If you get to looking at them, they’re all pretty much the same. The bags have a lot of the same ingredients on them. I might put some screenshots in here, but if you go and start looking at that, you’re going to find that a lot of them have, maybe, a sphagnum peat moss in them, they’ll have some forest products in them, but the main thing to remember is that it’s, basically, dead soil. It’s dead soil. They steam it, the pathogens are all gone out of it. The fungi’s gone out of it, the bacteria has gone out of it. We do not want the pathogens in it, of course, that’s one thing. Through that decomposing process or that composting process, we can get rid of those, but the fungi and the bacteria is what we do want in the soil and that’s, basically, gone in potting soil.
Any potting soil you find is dead soil and it has a slow release fertilizer in it. They advertise it as a time release thing simply as an advertisement that it’ll last over three months. The truth of the matter is, if they didn’t put the time release in there, it would burn your tender plants. So, that’s why they have to use that time release in there, is to keep it from burning the roots, because they’re actually using a synthetic, not all of them, but a lot of them.
There’s some going to what they consider… The organic has gotten to be a buzzword. Anytime you see organic on something, it draws people. So, the marketing community has learned if they put organic on potting soil, it helps them to market that, as well. So, a lot of potting soil, a lot of garden soil, you’ll see the words organic on it and, basically, what it means is that it might be derived, could be derived, from some natural fertilizer source. It’s important to read the bag, though, because most of that still has a degree of synthetic that is added to it for nitrogen and some phosphorous uses. To start out with, you’re pretty stuck where you’re at.
We’re going to teach you how you can build your soil, how you can reuse your soil. So, when you’re in the microgreen business, or if you’re doing it as a business, which we’re going to talk about in the next episode of this, is how to turn this into a successful business, how to get this started where you can actually make money from it. Not only that, but you can reuse the soil and you can actually regenerate that soil and make it better than what it was before. We’re going to be teaching that on down the road in some of these episodes and stuff.
So with that, I’ll give you another shot at the community garden. It looks like, since I’ve been here, everybody has left. It’s interesting. With that, Steve Szudera, founder of Table Top Farmer. Leave me a comment in the box below. Tell me what you think about the soil issues, some things you’d like to learn about the soil, and I’ll try to answer those comments. Some things that you’ve used in the past, maybe, that has worked, some things that haven’t worked out so well, and we’ll address those, as well. So we’ve got a train coming through here. It’s up on the tracks, of course, hopefully stays up there, but we’re gonna end this, and we’ll look forward to talking to you in a day or two. Thanks for watching.
Hey everyone, we’re back here with Tabletop Farmer for another Facebook Live talking about the microgreen business and growing microgreens. Today we’re going to talk a little bit about do microgreens have a special nutritional value? And the answer to that is yes, but there is a very important factor in that nutritional value and that’s something that I’ve done a lot of research over the weekend looking at all the different ways that people out there are growing microgreens and it’s very, very interesting.
And last week I made a phone call to some people that I work with in the soil health academy. They were on a soil health summit that I held earlier this year and we talked in great length about the nutritional value and how the plants get that in the beginning stages. And there are some important or some very, very interesting studies that have been done in the first days of growing plants.
And there’s a bacteria fungi ratio that helps to control the plant growth and it also helps feed that nutritional value to that plant within that first seven to 21 days. So, that being said, yes they have a very, very special nutritional value, but we’re going to be teaching and showing you what is the best way to get that and how to get the most out of it.
And that’s going to be coming up later on down here that we’re going to be teaching more about that. So it has some very exciting things coming for you about the microgreens, either growing them for your own use for health. If you don’t have a big yard with garden space and whatnot, that you can grow a garden and maybe you’re in a spot where you want to be able to utilize some type of nutritional plant in smoothies or salads, or just a munch on throughout the whole year, you’re able to do that with this microgreen system.
So with that I’m out here again on the Memorial Day Garden we have, I’m going to give you a little shot of this right here. As you can see, our weed barrier is doing awesome. It’s doing an unbelievable job for us. Our tomatoes are looking good. We got potatoes that came from seed. They’re up the lettuces doing good. The beans, the zucchini, the peas. We got sweet potatoes way back over there in the corner that came back. Dill, cucumbers, but we do have an issue, it’s called a rodent issue and it’s a kind of a ground squirrel thing.
And so this is going around the outside edge and you can see we’ve started putting in some posts to do that. So that is part of what I will be finishing this afternoon and working on to help to keep ground squirrels from chewing things off in the garden before we can chew them off.
That being sad, we’ve already covered what are microgreens and what are the best plant types for microgreens in that study. A lot of things being done with sunflowers, peas and radishes. Those seem to be the most popular ones at farmer’s markets, so you want to keep that in mind.
The sunflowers, the peas and the radishes. Radishes are used a lot for salads and whatnot. They’re very colorful but there’s some issues with growing the sunflowers, the peas not so much and the radishes not so much, but the sunflowers have, they have some issues with some fungus and things in them that we’ve been learning about so we’re going to be doing some testing for you as well.
We’re going to be testing on this nutritional value thing. Last week in the conversation I had with my soil health partners, and I don’t want to get this video too long, but with my soil health partners we talked about different ways.
We are going to be doing testing in two ways. We are going to be testing soil and we’re going to be testing tissue in the soil we’re growing and it’s going to be A against B and we’re going to be going all through that for you, showing you how to do all this so we have some real exciting things in store for you.
Leave your comments below. If you have questions about growing microgreens, maybe you’ve been thinking about it or you’re doing it already, some of your experiences, please comment below, give us a thumbs up. Give us a like on this video, if you like it, if you don’t like it, give us a thumbs down but hopefully it’s all likes.
So with that, Steve Szudera, founder of Tabletop Farmer signing off. Thanks for watching this. We’ll talk to you again soon.
This is what healthy nutrient rich soil looks like. Dark in color, has the cottage cheese look from the soil aggregates and full of living organisms. Notice how healthy the earth worms look ! Photo Courtesy of Brown Ranch ND Gabe Brown
On December 6, 2018 we will be launching a Soil Health Summit with over 25 speakers that will be sharing their area of expertise. These will be on topics from food safety, organic association updates and info, teachers that are bringing gardening to classrooms around the country and training others to do the same, all about fermenting vegetables and how it may just ruin that perfect sweet tooth you may have developed, heirloom seeds and all about seed saving and the importance of seed and how to grow plants from seed that are adapted to your area rather than just grabbing seed packs from your local stand when its time to plant, bee keeping and the important role of our polinators, grey water and why it is fast becoming a necessary companion to beds and gardens, market farming small and large, as well as many many more topics to help you to get the real truth not only about soil science but in many areas that effect out lives daily. And then on every call the topic of soil health is addressed and how important it is to everything that we do, how it is connected that the soil feeds us and everything that we grow. So on Dec 6, 2016 a link will appear to be taken to the page with all the info. In the meantime there is a signup on the right side of this page where you can enter your name , your best email, click the button and that will take you to a free report on 5 tips to restoring and maintaining soil health, you will be notified when the soil summit page opens up, I look forward to seeing you there.