Dakota Gardener: Gardening in the winter | Farm Forum

Gardening catalogs are arriving in the mailbox and my inbox is flooded with emails from seed companies touting the newest vegetable cultivars.

I’m starting to get the itch to get my hands dirty, but my garden is covered in 6 inches of snow.

What can a gardening addict do? Grow microgreens indoors!

Pioneered by the Chicago chef Charlie Trotter, microgreens are young, densely seeded vegetables or herbs that are grown in containers for one to four weeks before being harvested. Microgreens are sometimes called vegetable confetti and are a flavorful and nutritious topping for sandwiches, soups, pizzas and salads.

Easy-to-grow microgreens include radish, cress, kale, cabbage, kohlrabi, broccoli and mustard greens. From seed to harvest, these crops take seven to 14 days, depending upon the temperature of your house. Mixes of different microgreen seeds also are sold and usually labeled as mild or spicy in flavor. I like the spicy mixes because they usually contain peppery mustard greens.

More challenging crops, taking three to four weeks to mature, include beet, carrot, cilantro, basil, parsley and amaranth greens. The herbs tend to prefer warmer temperatures than the vegetables.

Not to be confused with sprouts, microgreens typically are grown in shallow containers

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