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Thursday 7 March 2013

Growing Wheatgrass for Easter

Today Ava and I planted wheatgrass for Easter.

Planting wheatgrass for Easter

Having spent most of my life in Australia where Easter falls in Autumn the tradition of growing wheatgrass for Easter is totally new to me. I first learnt of the tradition when Ava's preschool class grew wheatgrass in Easter baskets last year. Ava had enjoyed planting the wheatgrass seeds and watching the progress as it grew last year so I was keen for us to plant our own wheatgrass this year.

Ava with her Easter basket full of wheatgrass last year at preschool

Ava and her preschool friends (and Lola) with their Easter baskets last year

Growing wheatgrass is so simple and the fact that it grows so incredibly quickly makes it a great gardening project for small children who tend to lose interest, well... incredibly quickly!

We'll be using our wheatgrass in our Easter baskets which we are yet to make. In the meantime we planted our wheatgrass into small pots and once it has grown and we've made our Easter baskets we'll transfer it over.

Here's a look at how to plant wheatgrass...

What you'll need
Wheatgrass seeds (also known as wheat berries) - available in health food stores
Potting mix
Cling wrap (optional)

What you'll need to plant your wheatgrass

Before you start planting your wheatgrass you'll need to rinse the seeds and then leave them to soak in water for at least 6 hours. I left ours to soak overnight.

Once the seeds have soaked long enough you can start planting.

I started by lining the pots with a little cling wrap to cover the holes at the bottom. As our pots will be kept inside and almost our entire apartment is carpeted, I'm not too keen on having soil and water spilling everywhere. I covered the base of each pot loosely so that a little drainage will still be possible if needed. You can skip this step if your containers don't have large holes in the bottom like mine did.

I lined my pots with cling wrap to cover the large holes in the bottom

With the pots prepared we started adding the potting mix. We filled the pots about two thirds full and tapped them lightly on the bottom to help the potting mix settle.

Digging in the dirt

Ava adds potting mix to the pots

In goes the potting mix

Next up we added a layer of wheatgrass seeds over the entire surface of the potting mix. 
The instructions I found online said not to let the seeds overlap but this is pretty much impossible - especially when you have kids as helpers! Fingers crossed they will still grow fine.

Ava adds the seeds to the pots

We then added a light layer of potting mix over the surface of the seeds.

Covering the seeds with a light layer of potting mix

We then watered the pots with a light misting from a water squirter and covered them with newspaper.

Ava waters the pots

Squirt, squirt

For now we'll leave the pots in a warm area out of direct sunlight (not a problem in our apartment!) with the newspaper over the top. Every day we'll give them a light spray with the water squirter and cover them back up again. In no time we should see the wheatgrass starting to sprout, at which time we can remove the newspaper.

Stay tuned to see how they turn out!


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