So many times we have gotten items to eat in beautiful containers and wondered about the waste of one time use and disposal. Similar to the problems with plastic drink bottles we thought there might be a better use and wanted to produce kits that would enable an eco friendly reuse of food containers.
Our normal production containers are sourced from recycled plastic bottles and are made to be used as food containers of different capacities. We decided to take the process to the next level by allowing you to basically do the same things in containers you have now and reuse rather than throw them away to landfills. Some of the pictures here represent various food containers that were replanted with our microgreens.
We believe that simple is best so we have chosen a hydroponic system so all you need is a grow mat cut to your container shape and some microgreen seeds (Non GMO) to grow. Simply cut the grow material to your container bottom, soak the mat, seed and grow! Then 7-15 days later you will have fresh and live microgreens to snip, rinse, and enjoy! Click on the middle picture to go to our store.
Red Cabbage has long been a staple part of diets that were colorful and highly nutritious. Microgreens take all the goodness of the mature cabbage and package them into a tiny, beautifully colored new wrapper. Microgreens provide some 4-40 times the nutrient content of their mature counterpart so a little goes a long way as far as nutrients from you food.
Red Cabbage in particular has been found to help mitigate a high fat diet that is common today. Red Cabbage microgreens were found to be more beneficial than the mature cabbage itself and also benefits the CVD (cardio vascular disease) profile with a lowered LDL cholesterol and triglyceride readings.
Our Red Cabbage microgreen kits contain:
1 growing tray and humidity cover (approx 5"x5") made from recycled plastic bottles
1 custom blended Wonder Soil compressed coir wafer with worm castings and kelp (enough for three crops)
1 seed spreader container for easier seeding of your grow tray
1 small sprayer for misting of your seed and watering
enough seeds to grow 3 trays as pictured
complete instructions and support provided through our website
Easy to grow and great to eat ... seed to harvest in 7-12 days!!!
In searching for microgreens that can deliver nutrition and taste we found a great little tool provided by Whole Foods for their shoppers. Their ANDI (Aggregate Nutrional Data Index) is an attempt to quantify all sorts of nutrients contained in foods. A good discussion on the method and interpretation can be found here.
Sitting at the top of both lists was watercress and our microgreen of the day, garden cress. Cress becomes bitter when heated, so this crop is ideal for topping or finishing dishes. It has a distinctive peppery flavor like watercress but is a delicate offering as opposed to woody stems of regular watercress.
Starter Kit includes supplies for 6 complete crops; 2 growing trays and top from 100% recycled plastic bottles. WonderSoil wafer growing media (custom blend w worm castings and kelp). A seeding container with enough Non GMO seed for the 6 crops. The standard growing trays are approximately 5" square. Instructions and support provided to you via the internet.
Our new Super Cress kits provide you with home grown super nutrition on a year round basis. Seed to Fork in 10-21 days
Not often seen but spectacular tokyo bekana mustards have been called the japanese version of chinese cabbage. The beautiful lime green micro provides a striking contrast to the deep greens of most of our crops. It has a nice crunch and sweeter flavor that gives you a nice flavor boost in your microgreen arsenal.
Recently chosen as a leafy green for space travel, tokyo bekana is introduced in a recent blog entry from NASA which highlighted the choice and the initiation of grow trials in space. The amazing plant was chosen by NASA since it is like a lettuce or cabbage but fast growing and contains a potent array of nutrients to provide for life in space.
Here is NASA's take on it, "For the first time, a Chinese cabbage variety named Tokyo Bekana will be grown in space. The cabbage was chosen as a good candidate because it is a quick growing leafy green that is rated highly from a nutritional and taste perspective. "
Our new hydroponic kits will allow you to grow and taste this outstanding microgreen right in your own home, space travel not required!
Would like to share our recent blog posting on our Urbafresh website regarding a true asian superfood that is not commonly seen here.
"Besides being a spectacular looking microgreen, Red Komatsuna or japanese mustard spinach is a great tasting rich nutrient source. Long known in asia, the komatsuna is actually part of the brassica family so contains many of the cancer fighting compounds but also with the beautiful coloring providing even more compounds. The brassica family is prized for its potential cancer fighting effects from the presence of glucosinolates and the added anthocyanin boost from the coloration. Komatsuna itself in its mature form is nutrient dense and rich in beta carotene, calcium and Vitamins A, B2, C, K on top of the cancer fighters.
An interesting insight into its health benefits can be seen by looking at asian use of the komatsuna for health benefits. Here is an excerpt from a "Shizuoka Gourmet" blog entry from 2010 highlighting komatsuna.
-Combined with dried sardine whiting, or with sakura ebi/Cherry blossom shrimps, or with scallops, or with konbu/seaweed, helps preserve human bones, and activate rejuvenation.
-Combined with tomatoes, or with wakame seaweed, or with carrots, or with green chili peppers, povides for extra stamina, and helps prevent cancer.
-Combined with rice vinegar, or with orange, or with lemon, or with strawberries, helps prevent stress, and sore back/articulations, and helps swift recovery.
-Combined with konnyaku/devil’s tongue tuber, or with mushrooms, or with celery, or with bamboo shoots, helps combat obesity and prevent high blood pressure. Helps lower down blood cholesterol."
Our Red Komatsuna Microgreen Kit provides a hydronically grown sampling of this "new" (actually very old) super food.
See our new Kit offering now live on etsy.
In an effort to standardize our offerings and simplify things, we have prepared this comparison look at our three kit sizes of hydroponic and media growing systems. All of our trays are made from 100% Post Consumer Recycled (PCR) plastic from bottles. We had searched long for this specific trait as we believe that these reusable grow trays and their origin have a positive impact on our environment and our lives.
The three sizes are illustrated by the pictures of the trays and of our sustainably sourced, US produced Kenaf grow mats. Our "soil" based offerings highlight our custom blended Wonder Soil compressed coir wafers with worm castings and kelp. The photo of the three nested trays show the overall footprint of our growing kits while the picture of the mats show you the growing area for seeding purposes. Note that the measures of the trays are approximately 6" sq for the small, 7" sq for the standard, and 9" sq for our large size. The last photo is of our standard tray seeded today with some radish seeds in order to give you a sense of the density for seeding.
We are in the midst of revamping our store offerings to give you a choice of sizes for the growing kits. We should have all offerings updated by mid week to reflect the sizes.
The extreme health benefits of microgreens are indisputable as basic research has shown that microgreens contain anywhere from 4 to 40 times the nutrient value of their mature counterparts. We have in our growing kits things like sprout mixes that can be eaten in 3-4 days ... and microgreens from 7-30 days depending on the crops. We have grown red arrow radish to harvest stage now successfully in 5 days (see pics below). These fit in between the sprouts and micros so I am referring to them as hyper greens for their rapid growth.
Found also another fascinating reason these are essentially a super grouping of radishes. It has been shown that the compounds in broccoli and radish are cancer fighters, but even more fascinating is there is a degradation in the amounts of the glucosinolate which is the cancer fighting compound from the seed stage, so the quicker a radish is grown, the more potent the levels of cancer fighting compounds. Research studies also show that the glucosinolate in the radish might be superior to broccoli since radish has a different path to oxidizing the compound. Additional benefits come from eating the radish early in the sprout cycle and in its raw or fresh state.
Our new Hyper Green Kits feature hydroponically grown radish micros as pictured. Aside from these great benefits for health, these are spectacular looking greens with a pinkish red stem and bright green leaves. The taste is radishy so it adds a zing to salads and sandwiches!
Here is your chance to experience and compare two different methods of growing wonderful microgreens. We have chosen two of the most popular methods of growing and include all the supplies and equipment needed to grow 4 crops of Radish Microgreens in your own home.
Our kit includes enough seeds and all the equipment to grow 4 complete trays of wonderful Non GMO, Organic Red Arrow Radish. The trays are our medium sized trays that approximately 6 1/2" square and made from 100% recycled plastic bottles.
The new kit includes 2 kenaf based grow mats for hydroponic growing. Also included are 2 custom blended Wonder Soil wafers that are formulated with compressed coir, worm castings and kelp. We also include our seed spreader and a spray bottle for misting the seeds as they germinate. We provide complete instructions and support through the web.
This is a great way to get an introduction to the exciting Micro Farming revolution bringing fresh and live nutrition to your table. There is nothing fresher and more potent than microgreens that you grow and bring to your table! Click Here to purchase a kit now.
Our strategic partner, Terrafarms India is pleased to unveil a custom MicroFarm installation at the Andaz Delhi. Managing Director Linesh Pillai designed and manufactured this initial installation to custom fit the requirements of Chef Alex of the AnnaMaya restaurant in this spectacular property. Scroll down on this sway to see the story ...
We just got our lighting unit and have started our internal testing. We have observed that microgreen growing can be done with relatively low levels of growing lights. We have also found that the red/blue LED's or high K whites can produce great results. We are using a 16hr light cycle in our application.
These inexpensive lights provide enough lighting to grow out nice crops microgreens in a normal amount of time. The color mix works to create healthy and vibrant products. Problem is the light bar providing a horizontal "point" source of lights so the plants will tend to bend to the middle of the trays. You can counteract this by rotating the trays themselves, but it should be enough to harden the crops by finishing under a more diffuse light or sunlight.
You can find these in our curated Amazon store where we have highlighted two inexpensive LED light units that work well. Each unit will provide enough light to grow at least 16 our our trays and 32 if you rotate them out. The trick is to manage the height of the light to allow for enough spread to cover your crops. Pictured is our 2ft test unit that fit our space better, but for actual production the 4ft units in our store are more optimal.
Urbaform is a technology integrator and developer specializing in food production in the urban environment ...