Fennel Microgreens: Tips for Growing Micro Fennel Indoors
Eating more vegetables is always a good idea. One way to ensure you get enough fresh vegetables all year round is to grow edible baby greens such as fennel microgreens (young fennel shoots) at home. Whether added to salads, dips, or seafood dishes, these aromatic microgreens with a mild anise-like flavor will make your taste buds take notice. Growing fennel microgreens is easy: all you need is fennel seeds, some containers or pots filled with chemical-free soil, a sunny windowsill (if you plan to grow fennel microgreens indoors), and water. The following paragraphs outline the steps needed to grow nutritious fennel microgreens at home.
- Pick a tray or container with drainage holes, and fill it with fine-textured, organic potting mix formulated for seed starting. Moisten the mix. Sow the fennel seeds by sprinkling them over the soil surface, with a fine dusting of soil on top.
- After distributing the fennel seeds over the soil, find a suitable sunny spot for your indoor microgreen garden. Fennel shoots will usually grow well near a south-facing window. Note that artificial lighting may be needed for "off-season" production.
- Water the soil frequently, but bear in mind that fennel is sensitive to over and under watering. When the plants are still small, the best method for keeping your indoor micro fennel garden moist is to mist the soil with a spray bottle. Once the fennel microgreens are growing well, use bottom-watering: put a tray under the container and fill it with water, then let the soil and roots absorb moisture through the drainage holes. This takes about 45 minutes.
- Fennel microgreens will be ready for harvest in about two weeks. Use a pair of sharp kitchen shears to cut them about half an inch above the soil. Rinse off any dirt, and spin or pat dry. Serve and eat them right away. With their mild, anise-like flavor, young fennel shoots make a delicious addition to salads, dips, and seafood dishes.
- Once you've used up your fennel microgreen crop, start a new crop, or try growing other vegetables and herbs as microgreens. Good options include sunflower shoots, snow pea shoots, beet baby/micro greens, micro basil, and radish microgreens.