How to Grow Wheatgrass

It's easy to grow wheatgrass at home as a pet treat, as a cute grass garden for decoration, or to clip for smoothies and juices.

individual grass gardens
Let the grass grow freely or trim it occasionally with scissors to the desired height.

How to grow wheatgrass begins with the right seeds. Although wheatgrass seeds are sometimes referred to as wheatberries, they're actually hard red winter wheat seeds. Wheatgrass seeds are readily available from health food stores or online outlets. When buying seeds from a seed retailer or agricultural supply store, you should purchase organic seeds if you plan to consume the grass.

Wheatgrass can be grown in water but it's usually grown in a container filled with potting soil. You can sow seeds directly into the soil, but they get a head start when first sprouted in a jar.

How to Sprout Wheatgrass

Pour the wheatgrass seeds into a 1-quart glass jar. Add filtered room-temperature water, cover the opening with the lid, and shake to thoroughly rinse the seeds. Carefully drain the water using a strainer or a cap with tiny holes. After straining, cover the seeds with fresh filtered water.

Let the seeds soak in the water for eight to 12 hours at room temperature. Then, rinse and drain the sprouts. If the seeds aren't showing any signs of small white roots, allow them to sit in the drained but moist jar for another eight to 12 hours, rinsing and draining until the roots grow.

Planting Wheatgrass

One cup of sprouted wheatgrass seeds covers the soil in a pot 7 inches in diameter or several smaller pots. Choose a container at least 2-1/2 to 3 inches deep.

Soil for growing wheatgrass should be a lightweight potting mix (garden soil is too dense). Moisten the potting mix and place it in the pot, leaving about 1 inch of room between the soil and the top of the container.

Spread the sprouted wheatgrass seeds across the soil in a dense layer about one or two seeds deep. With a spray bottle, gently water the soil, so it's damp but not soggy.

Loosely cover the top of the pot with plastic wrap, a shower cap, or other material to keep moisture from quickly evaporating. Place the pot in a warm location, about 70 to 75°F, but away from direct sunlight.

How to Grow Wheatgrass

Check the wheatgrass seeds daily. It should be actively growing in three to five days. When the seeds have buried themselves in the potting soil, and you see green shoots, remove the protective covering and move the pot to an indoor location in bright sunlight.

Keep the soil lightly moist with a sprayer. The tiny wheatgrass plants die if you allow the soil to dry out.

Sprouted wheatgrass is ready for decorating projects or pets in about six to eight days.

Eating Wheatgrass

You can cut wheatgrass for eating at any stage but ideally when it reaches about 6 inches tall. The older the grass gets, the more bitter it tastes. Clip the grass just above the seed.

Like your lawn, wheatgrass continues to grow after you clip it. Still, the nutritional properties are lower with the second cutting. So it's best to simply compost or dispose of the seeds and potting mix and start another batch.

Wheatgrass is high in nutrients and contains iron, calcium, magnesium, amino acids, chlorophyll, and vitamins A, C, and E.

Sometimes wheatgrass can cause nausea, hives, or other discomforts. People with wheat intolerance may want to avoid it. Although wheatgrass has been touted as a treatment for various ailments, little research has backed up those claims.

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