The purpose of this step:

Most of the seeds have sprouted long, tiny roots and sprouts. It is high time to put the grains into trays to grow into the soil and give healthy big shoots.

Is it better to grow wheatgrass with or without soil?

Shortly, it is better to plant wheatgrass seeds on the soil cause of drainage. Excess water drains down, and the top of the soil remains dry. That does not lead to mold and even fungus problems.

As I wrote many times, I have a lot of experience in growing wheatgrass at home. For more than three years, I have tried many different ways of planting.

  • I've planted seeds deep into the soil.
  • I've spread seeds above on the soil.
  • I've grown wheatgrass on paper and cloth towels.
  • I've grown wheatgrass in flat trays without drainage holes, without everything, I just watered on top with water.
  • I've even grown wheatgrass in double trays; an aquarium air pump worked deep in the water into the bottom tray, and the top tray was with drainage holes; wheatgrass grew on it as on a steaming basket.

Can you imagine, all these methods work. And sure, they have their pros and cons. So, as a result, I stopped on this method: just spreading wheatgrass seeds on top of the soil.

For me, this method turned out the most simple and most effective, also with many advantages:

  • no mold problems because all the water is absorbing right into the soil;
  • and the fan blows off all the remaining moisture from the surface of soil and seeds;
  • the roots have a lot of room to grow.

What is the best soil for wheatgrass?

To grow my wheatgrass at home, I use a regular container mix blended with aged compost. If you want to buy a lightweight potting mix as I do, make sure that minimal fertilizers are added and only organic.

If you have your own backyard, you can make a mix by yourself. Just take regular garden soil and add peat moss or even compost, which you can also make your self in the backyard.

Although this way is cheaper (make it by myself), I chose the most optimal option: buying a big bag of potting mix once a month. There is no point in complicating the process of growing wheatgrass at home. Unless, of course, you are no in gardening, and you always have a first-class mix for potting plants.

The round black planting tray with a mix of regular garden soil, peat moss, and compost.
The lightweight potting mix which I regularly use for planting wheatgrass seeds.

Note: As I already wrote, statistically, 9 out of 10 who started to grow wheatgrass at home leave this activity after the first time. And after all, everyone understands that wheatgrass juice is highly healthful, but complicating the process for themselves gives up without starting a long distance.

Below I will describe how I do planting in more detail.

Does wheatgrass need fertilizer?

No, no, and no! For one simple reason. We're not going to grow a whole plant! We will start harvesting as soon as the shoots are 6 inches long (about 15 cm). At this moment, everything that the sprout needs for growth take it from the germinated grain.

So, at the first stage of wheatgrass growth, those nutrients that have been conserved in the grain kernel are enough for the plant's initial development. Then, further, the plant's root system develops and begins to receive food from the soil. But any stages beyond the first are not of interest to us.

I remember how I grew wheatgrass in the water, and I did not ever use any fertilizer. The plant received nutrition only from the kernel. Believe me, or better, try it yourself; juice from that wheatgrass tasted the same as soil-planted wheatgrass.

You can argue that soil-planted wheatgrass contains more vitamins and minerals for along time, but no one has ever provided actual research. At least, I do not know about them. So, if you have it, please, send me the link to the source. And as I said, the shoots grown on a wet paper towel look just as healthy and full of energy. So, I mean, there is no actual reason to doubt that these shoots contain fewer vitamins and minerals.

And again, do not complicate the process!

Tip: It doesn't matter how you grow wheatgrass at home, using soil or not, do not use any fertilizer. It doesn't make any sense!

Day 3

So, at the beginning of the third day, I have well-sprouted grains in my strainer.

I do not recommend keeping the grains in the strainer for more than one day during the germination phase:

  • Because the roots and shoots will grow so large that you'll exactly break them if you wash or take them out of the strainer, which means only one thing, the seeds will spoil in the container.
  • Moreover, some seeds will sprout right through the mesh! There are no problems with the roots, firstly there are three of them, and secondly, they are thinner. But the sprout is thicker and can be stuck into the mesh! And on the second day, it will be so thick that you will exactly break it when you try to relieve it.

Mixing bowl with the strainer, full of well-sprouted wheatgrass seeds. Some of the seeds sprouted through the strainer.
I do not leave the grains to germinate in the strainer for more than one day!

Day 3 - Morning

On the morning of the third day, I wash the well-sprouted seeds directly into the strainer very carefully.

And prepare bowls with soil:

  • For 3/4 cups of wheatgrass grains that I started with, three plastic trays with a diameter of 9 inches will be sufficient.
  • Trays do not have to be full. I just need 1-1.5 inches of soil in containers to provide roots some space to grow.
  • Throw out the trash if you get it; break up all the clumps; level the soil well in a bowl.
  • Press the ground a little with your hands, not firmly, just to make the surface flat.

The round container with well-sprouted wheatgrass seeds evenly spread across the soil.
Water well from a spray bottle right onto the seeds.

  • Spread sprouted seeds evenly across the soil into three bowls.
  • Level off seeds over the soil's surface with light hand movements; do not press hard, avoid breaking the roots and shoots.
  • It's time to water well from a spray bottle right onto the grains. The soil will absorb excess water. And if you overwater it, it will pass through the drainage holes in the bottom of the planting trays.
  • Cover the trays with lids; it's essential. Seeds do not have to lose any moisture. But cover them not tight. Or another way, make some holes right on the lids.
  • Put them under the grow lamp, if you have it. Or move them on the site under the Sun.

Three round planting trays with soil and well-sprouted wheatgrass seeds on the kitchen shelf under the grow lamp.
Is not it a kindergarten for plants?

Day 3 - Evening

  • I do not more water after I did it well until the seeds root and grass begins to grow. To be sure I watered well, the lids have to be misted.
  • Just lift the lid for a moment, or just make sure they are not closed tightly; otherwise, the seeds will sour; 

Three lids over the planting containers are misted a lot.
By the end of the day, the lids have to be misted.

Day 4

By the morning of the fifth day, or even by the end of the fourth day, my crops are 1-2 inches tall, and they push the covering lid up. So anyway, if it hasn't happened, I remove the covers on the fifth day, water a bit, put them under the grow lamp, and wait until the sprouts have risen enough to harvest.

Day 4 - Morning

  • I do not need to water crops now.
  • I check if there no is a sour smell; there should only be a smell of raw watered soil and wet grains;
  • Cover the lids loosely again;

Day 4 - Evening

  • The wheat sprouts are already tall enough, almost reaching the lids. If they have already reached the covers, or even lift them, remove the covers and water them a bit.
  • I open the lids, ventilate and close back until the following day.
  • I need to water, only if I remove the covering lids.

So, what I have to do now?

I start watering from the fifth day every day or a little bit but twice a day. And harvest when my wheatgrass is about 5-9 inches tall.

At the end of Step 3:

The following morning, I have three planting containers with wheatgrass about 1-2 inches tall.

The wheatgrass crops have grown so tall that they push the covering lids.
Crops don't need covering lids anymore; it looks so cool!

Go to STEP 2 | STEP 3 | Go to STEP 4