Learning how to grow wheatgrass is a fun and easy project (with yummy and healthy results!). These instructions explain exactly what you need to do to learn how to grow your own wheatgrass.
Wheatgrass is typically grown indoors in small trays for use in juicing and smoothies. Dry, clean wheat seeds are soaked in clean water for several hours, placed on top of moist potting soil, and kept moist until they germinate. The seeds grow thin white roots and nutrient-rich green shoots. The healthy green blades of wheatgrass can then be harvested and used immediately.
Your kitchen wheatgrass garden tray will be the perfect addition to your kitchen decor and your juicing routine! Or it will become a target for your cat. Let’s find out!
How to Grow Wheatgrass
First you’ll need to collect the supplies for growing your own wheatgrass. You’ll need a tray and strainer, plus consumables like potting mix/media and the wheatgrass seeds themselves. There are also pre-made wheatgrass kits available and even subscription services which send you new seeds and growing media every month. Cool!
Now let’s look at the supplies you’ll need to gather for growing wheatgrass:
Wheatgrass Growing Trays
Wheatgrass can be grown in specialized wheatgrass/microgreen trays, garden centre seed-starting trays, or even in repurposed take-out trays. Seed starting trays from garden centres work well, as do repurposed take-out trays. If you don’t want to use plastic, you can use a single baking tin or pyrex dish. Having a cover of some kind for the tray will help with germination.
Here are some nice options for wheatgrass growing trays once you’re ready to move up to an upgraded model:
- FatPlants Organic Wheatgrass Growing Kit with Cedar Tray
- Hamama Microgreens Starter Kit with Ceramic Growing Tray
- Hamama Microgreens Starter Kit with Bamboo Frame
Finding High-Quality Wheatgrass Seeds (Wheat Berries)
Take the time to find high-quality wheatgrass seeds. Look for Certified Organic Pathogen-Free Wheat Seeds. Wheatgrass seeds go by many names, and can be called “Hard Winter Wheat Seeds”, “Hard Red Spring Wheat Seeds”, or “Wheatgrass Berries”. Here are some high-quality wheatgrass seed options:
More about where to buy wheatgrass seeds
Potting Mix or Growing Media for Wheatgrass
Wheatgrass grows well in sterile seed-starting potting mix. Choose an organic seed-starting soil, or at least one that does not have chemical fertilizers mixed in. Here are some options for potting mix:
- Espoma Organic Seed Starter Premium Potting Mix
- Jiffy Organic Seed-Starting Jiffy-Mix
- Large Bulk Package of Pro-Mix HP Growing Media
Strainer to Rinse Wheat Berry Seeds
You’ll need a metal or plastic strainer to wash the seeds. This isn’t 100% necessary but it does make the planting go much easier! Ensure the holes in the strainer are smaller than the seeds, so as not to wash out any seeds.
Note: If you’re using a pre-fab seed pack, then you won’t need a seed strainer at all (and often they contain the growing mix too!)
How to Grow Wheatgrass: Step-by-Step Instructions
- Measure out your wheatgrass seeds in the clean, empty tray. Pour enough seeds into the tray so that the seeds cover about half the available area. The seeds should be almost touching each other, but not quite. Set the seeds aside.
- Sanitize your supplies. I use my dishwasher’s sanitize setting to sanitize the tray, mesh strainer, and knife.
- Sanitize your seeds, or ensure you’re buying properly cleaned seed for growing edible wheatgrass. I follow the University of California method, in which seeds are immersed in a mixture of warm water and hydrogen peroxide for 5 minutes.
- Soak the wheatgrass seeds in the tray for 6-8 hours in filtered water.
- Pour seeds into the mesh strainer and set aside to drain.
- Fill the tray with sterile growing mix until soil is about 3 cm (1 inch) deep. Gently compress the soil mix in the tray as you fill it.
- Water soil with filtered water so that the soil is moist but not dripping wet. Muddy = too wet.
- Rinse the seeds in the strainer with filtered water.
- Evenly distribute rinsed seeds onto moist soil surface.
- Lightly compress the wheatgrass seeds into the soil.
- Cover the tray with a lid. If your tray has no lid, cover the tray with another tray or a baking sheet.
- Now we wait for the seeds to germinate!
How to Care For Trays of Wheatgrass at Home
- Check the seeds and soil moisture levels once or twice per day. Checking for seed germination and growth is a key part of learning how to grow wheatgrass.
- Remove the lid when the seeds have germinated (tiny little sprouts are coming out of them). Place the tray in a sunny warm indoor area, on the patio, or under an LED plant light.
- Keep checking the seeds daily for soil moisture and growth, watering if necessary. Ensure the soil is kept moist but not wet.
- Harvest the wheatgrass with a knife or scissors when the wheatgrass is approximately 6″ high. Only use scissors if you’re going to use the wheatgrass within the next day or two.
- Wash wheatgrass by fully submerging in cold water.
- Spread the grass onto a clean towel to dry.
- If storing, wrap the wheatgrass in paper towel in an airtight container in the fridge.
- The wheatgrass will grow back after harvest and can be used a second time (but rarely a third time….).
- The used soil can then be composted, and you can start all over again!
Where to Buy Wheatgrass Seeds
Wondering where to buy wheatgrass seeds? It’s easy to order Wheatgrass Seeds online and to find them in specialty grocery stores. Keep in mind that wheatgrass seeds are also called “Hard Winter Wheat Seeds”, “Hard Red Spring Wheat”, or “Wheatgrass Berries”. I look for Certified Organic Pathogen-Free Wheatgrass Seeds or Wheat Berries.
Do You Need to Buy a Tray for Growing Wheatgrass
Wheatgrass can be grown in almost any flat container. If you don’t have the perfect container right off the bat, you can germinate your wheatgrass seeds in a mason jar while you find the right container. You could grow wheatgrass on a big dinner plate or pie dish…it’s pretty hardy.
I often repurpose plastic or metal takeout trays and store-bought produce containers. The trays are used to hold in the soil in which the wheatgrass grows. Like microgreens, wheatgrass seeds are not buried in the soil, but instead are laid on top of the soil to grow.
Does Wheatgrass Require Soil to Grow?
It is possible to grow wheatgrass without soil, but I have had much better results using a growing media – such as sterile potting soil. I use an organic sterile seed-starting potting mix which does not contain any chemical fertilizers or harmful pathogens.
I find that the growing retains moisture, helping the seeds germinate. A good growing media also holds adequate amounts of both air and water for the roots of the wheatgrass (both air and water are super-important for healthy plant roots). The wheatgrass also has a chance at gaining some extra nutrients from the soil.
Using Your Homegrown Organic Wheatgrass
Once you’ve learnt how to grow wheatgrass, you can juice it at home. I actually don’t have a juicer, and prefer to add the whole wheatgrass to a smoothie. You’ll need a high-powered blender to cut through the fibres of the wheatgrass. I use a Vitamix, and my aunt loves her Blendtec. Either one of these machines is an excellent long-term kitchen investment.
Learning how to grow wheatgrass is not only healthy and beautiful, but it will also save you some money. Buying organic wheatgrass can be very costly, whether you buy the grass at the grocery store or buy prepared wheatgrass juice from the juice bar. So why not try out a new skill while saving some money? You can also use your new wheatgrass growing skills to grow other microgreens.