Posted on 11 April 2010 by urbangardencasual.com

Grow Your Own Wheatgrass

wheatgrassBy Sonya Welter

Some people grow their own wheat grass to juice for smoothies.

It’s so loaded with vitamins, minerals, enzymes and chlorophyll that it’s referred to as a superfood, capable strengthening the immune system and battling any number of ailments.

But I grow wheat grass for a much more important reason. I grow wheat grass for my cats.

Growing your own wheatgrass is much cheaper than the cutesy grow-you-own-cat-grass packets sold in pet stores or the trays of fresh wheatgrass in the produce department of fancy grocery stores. Wheat grass is sprouted wheat berries (which can also be ground to make wheat flour).

Almost any natural food store should carry whole wheat berries for between one and two dollars a pound. Both red wheat berries or white wheat berries will sprout just fine, but make sure that the wheat berries are whole (not cracked) and raw.

If you’re growing wheat grass for kitty purposes, fill a six inch diameter pot with all-purpose potting mix, plus a little compost thrown in if you have it. If you’re growing wheat grass for yourself, use a 12 by 12 inch greenhouse tray instead so that you’ll have enough wheat grass to juice for several smoothies.

Measure out enough wheat berries to densely cover your pot or tray (two tablespoons is good for a six inch pot) and soak them overnight in an open jar of water. The next morning, drain the seeds and sow them in your pot or tray, covering them just barely with potting mix. Stick the pot in a warm, sunny window, and water once a day or as needed to keep the soil evenly moist.

The wheatgrass is ready to harvest when it is at least six inches tall, about ten days after planting. You can snip off leaves and add them to your cat’s food, or you can just let your cats graze directly from the pot. Limit kitty’s access to the wheat grass at first, since some cats get an upset tummy from eating too many greens. And, if your cats are anything like my cats, if left to their own devices they’ll make a huge mess with the dirt, too.

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