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Make Money Growing Microgreens Indoors

How one person made money on microgreens

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Make Money Growing Microgreens Indoors!


​Microgreens are one of the most profitable crops you can grow.  They can be grown in a small space and can sell for $50 per pound or more​, making them an ideal crop for small farms and urban growers.  I will show you how you can make money growing microgreens indoors in areas as small as a shelf in the living room, basement, garage or shipping container – earning potentially six figures in revenue per year!  Check out the video above to see!

The setup cost is low​ and the growing cycle is super quick (usually around 10-14 days), meaning you can be harvesting and selling your first crop in just a couple of weeks.  So, how do you start a microgreens business and start selling your produce?

1) Low startup cost

You can start your business with just one or two 10″ x 20″ trays of microgreens and scale up from there. Each tray only costs about $2 in terms of soil and seed  You can start off just supplying one restaurant or producing enough microgreens to sell once a week at a farmer’s market and increase production as demand for your product grows.

2) Fast turnaround time

Unlike crops like corn or wheat, you don’t need to wait a whole season or more to harvest. Microgreens go from seed to harvest in as little as 1 week or 4 weeks at most although most average around 10-14 days.  That fast turnaround time allows you to experiment and maximize the efficiency of your operation. You can also quickly scale production up or down should your sales fluctuate throughout the year.

3) Year-round growing

Unless you have greenhouses, microgreens are one of only a few ways you can produce food year-round as a small farmer or even if you live in a large city but have a little bit of space – even the size of a closet. Growing mushrooms ​is another way.  This also means it’s a great source of consistent income. Or if you’re already a farmer, you can use microgreens to earn extra money over the winter and diversify your business.Make money growing different kinds of microgreens

4) Higher nutrition

Microgreens are superfoods. They’re packed full of vitamins and nutrients. They appeal both to restaurants as garnishes and high-end ingredients, as well as to health-conscious consumers.  In fact, they have up to 4o times the nutrient impact as their mature plant counterparts.

​5) High-value crop – This is how you make money growing microgreens indoors

Microgreens sell for high prices to top restaurants and food stores. Since they’re such a niche product at their best when fresh, as a local producer you can also charge a premium for them.  Farmer’s markets are also great places to sell them.  You can make quite a lot of money growing microgreens in any space indoors that you can find!

Because the crop cycle is so short, commercial growers can make a good income in a very small space. Most microgreen varieties are ready to harvest in about two weeks, so a capable grower can produce 20-25 crops per year. By stacking the growing channels or trays vertically, four times as much can be produced in the same space.

Using a four rack system, many growers are producing an average of 50 pounds of microgreens in a 60 square foot growing area per 2-week crop cycle. At $25 per pound, that’s a return that beats just about any other legal crop. Most growers report an average harvest of 5 to 6 ounces of microgreens per single tray ( 10″ x 20″ ) when grown on a single level, such as a tabletop. ​ So, the amount you can grow, and the amount of money you can make growing microgreens, all depends on the amount of space you can devote to it.

How to Grow Microgreens Indoors

First off, watch the video!  There are many other videos on YouTube as well that show you exactly how to grow these little veggies.  Note that microgreens are different than sprouts.  With sprouts, you eat the top (consisting of only cotyledons – not true leaves), seed casing and root.  Microgreens are allowed to grow for longer until they have one or two sets of true leaves before being harvested.  Only the leaves and stems are eaten.

Seeding and Germination

Baby MicrogreensYou can use either soil (buy a potting mix) or use the hemp or coconut coir mats (which make things a bit less messy).  Dampen the soil.  Spread 1/2 to 1 inch of it into your tray with drainage holes and make sure it is as level as you can.  Break up any big lumps so that it is fairly consistent.  Then sprinkle your seeds in quite thickly, leaving about 1/4 – 1/2 inch of space between each.  Place this tray on another the same size with no holes in it.

Cover the seeds with vermiculite. This mineral-based material absorbs water and releases it slowly, keeping seeds damp but not too wet. Follow instructions for planting depth provided on the seed packet. Some seeds should be barely covered; others need thicker covering to germinate (sprout and grow) well. Label plantings.

Water the flats with a gentle shower or mist them with a squirt bottle, soaking the vermiculite without washing away the seeds.  Also, put about 1/2 cup of water in the lower tray and ensure it is distributed around the bottom.   Until the seeds germinate and green shoots sprout from them, water lightly as needed to keep the seed-starting mix damp. If the mix is too wet, seeds cannot root and fail to grow.  Usually, misting them morning and evening works quite well.

Keep Growing Microgreens Moist but not Wet

Cover them with plastic to help keep the moisture in.  You can also use the domed plastic lids available at Amazon.  They do not need light or nutrients until they have germinated and you can see them starting to poke their heads up through the soil.  They do, however, need to be kept warm at this stage.  Set the trays on a heat mat designed for seed starting or on a heating pad.

When the seeds germinate at first leave the lids on and do not provide extra light.  In fact, many growers keep another flat on top of them so that they will grow a bit leggy at this stage.  This makes harvesting later MUCH easier as you have decently long stems to cut off.  Once they are about an inch tall, remove the lid and the heat source.  Place them un T5 florescent lights or LED light strips on the racks that you have ready for them.  Many people use the very top of the rack for germination as it is dark up there and then move the trays when they need light.Microgreens ready to harvest

Keep watering them from the bottom only now start adding nutrients as per the instructions on the bottle.  Simply lift up the tray with the holes in it and add about 1 cup of water, twice per day, to the bottom tray.  If at any time the edges or corners look or feel dry (just poke your finger in!) then start to slowly add more nutrient water each time you water.  You do not want it soggy – just moist.

Harvest Time!

Once they have completely filled the tray and have true leaves growing on them and are about 3 inches tall, you need to harvest them.  Simply start from one edge and start cutting them off by the handful.  If this step is done carefully, you will not have to wash them at all.  Their shelf life in the refrigerator is about one week.  You can also take the flats to the farmer’s markets and harvest them there – people will be so impressed by the freshness!

Please note that this site is supported by affiliate marketing which means that a small portion will be paid to maintain this site from any purchases made through it. This in no way affects the price of the products on this page.

Check out the ads for all of the supplies that you will need at the top and bottom of this article.  You will find this to be a very inexpensive enterprise to take on, work on part-time, and make decent money from growing microgreens, even in limited space, indoors!

Please follow me by adding your e-mail address in the top right corner and don’t forget to comment!  I always get ideas about what to write about from people’s comments so keep them coming.  I truly hope you give this a try for viable income, all year round.

 

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Darlene Thompson

After having lived in Canada's most northerly territory of Nunavut where outdoor gardening is nigh impossible, I started down my adventure of indoor gardening. I hope you find the various methods as exciting as I do!

28 Comments

  1. After reading your review I never gave ti a thought this would be a possibility, to think even if someone lived in a one bedroom flat or apartment, there is still money to be made in this area.

    Does the temperature of the room used for growing these crops make any difference or do you need to be kept in a cool area, my place gets really warm in summer and really cold in winter.

    • Hi Dave!  It really depends on what you mean by “really cold and really hot”.  Frankly, if a human being can tolerate it, the microgreens should be just fine.  Just make sure you use a heating mat or something like that in the winter for germination – that is the only critical time they need increased warmth.  Other than that, you’re good to go!

  2. Thanks a lot for such an amazing review about Make Money Growing Microgreens Indoors and explanation are given.

    I have often heard of IGrowing Microgreens Indoors so I decided to search on the internet. I have read many articles about it, but these are the best I have found with a lot of useful information. It’s a good way to create a passive income in my opinion and I will definitely try.

    Thanks again and keep in touch.

    • I’m so glad you liked my article!  I tell you, if I had let myself go on it, there would have been about 3 different videos and a lot more text, too!  I tried to keep it as compact as possible.

  3. Wow this is nice I must say that you have done a great job on this article as it is very interesting and informative too and I know it would be of great help to the public as it has been of help to me.this is a nice business ideas just grow micro greens and after sometime get paid from selling them I think this would be great for 2020

    • Well, its winter now so you should get growing right away!  LOL I’m sure glad that you liked my article – thank you!

  4. This is totally awesome! I was trying to grow my own greens in my garage but they were getting too much LED light and ended up being faded, plus I didn’t know when to harvest them. I think microgreens will be easier since they operate on a shorter time frame. Which microgreens do you recommend to start?

    • Thank you!  I like a variety of tastes and colours.  My personal favourites are sunflower shoots, radish shoots and pea shoots but I also like to get some red kale or something like that as well for a splash of colour.  A lot of people like wheatgrass to make smoothies with although I am not a fan personally – LOL

  5. Wow what an outstanding idea in growing microgreens. Good to know that these crops can be so profitable and it makes sense since there is a real push toward healthy eating these days, which is definitely a good thing. We’ve come a long way since the the red steak and cigarette diet of the 1950s (exaggerating, slightly) so why no capitalize on that fact. Your five reasons are excellent reasons to get into this venture and I would imagine one could do very well especially in a large city. I will save your post and video as it might be something I’ll try starting up very soon, thanks for the great recommendation!

    • I’m so glad you liked this.  You are totally right about this being a perfect venture in a large city.  Just LOOK at all those high-end restaurants and shops that will pay big bucks for totally fresh microgreens.  I wish you success!

  6. hi, it’s great to be back at this awesome site. It’s pretty interesting that it is a two to three week growth cycle. About 14 days you said. My concern, Would be about bugs and that kind of thing. Growing soil indoors, there is a lot of Maintenance to it. so you really need the space, and you need the right Equipment. there might be a small start up cost I would imagine. How much would you say that is? I think if a person was willing to put in the time, and work, this would be a great way to add some extra profits every month.

    • Hiya Jake,  Actually, since it IS inside, pests are generally not a problem.  Just don’t go strolling through an outdoor garden or long grass and then march straight into your growing space.  The large manufacturers are actually very precise about people not bringing pests from outside in.  The soil isn’t a problem as all potting soil you buy is sterile and pest free.  There is very little maintenance once the seeds are planted except for the twice a day watering and the lights should be on timers.

      There is one couple who have a grow space in their basement who lives just north of Calgary (Canada).  They make over $100,000/year and they each work about 20 hours a week at it.  So, it really depends on the size of your grow.

  7. Hi Darlene. I saw that you have experience in indoor gardening, living in the northern part of Canada. I like your article because it provides information on how to make money, starting a small business that does not require a large investment. It’s great that in about 14 days you can already have production. Being inside, you can have production all year. The problem is the sale, how can you get a contract with a restaurant, for example?

    • Hi Carmen – with a restaurant you would need to get a hold of the chef.  Go to the restaurant at a non-busy time and bring samples of your produce for them to try.  In restaurants, it is the chef that is the real influencer for the purchasing decisions.

  8. Wow! Very inspiring posts! I have never thought of a good idea to make money through indoor gardening. This is a brilliant idea. Coupled with a detailed and complete way to start a business.
    Through your article, I came to mind to be able to do this too. Because the green vegetables we eat today, already contain a lot of chemicals. Where these chemicals, can have negative adverse effects on health. 

    For sure I will try it, even when searching for sales demand, at least I can use it for my kitchen use as well.
    By the way, what is the key success factors for the microgreens we plant?

    Thanks

    • Hi Kylie,  You would really have to work at it to mess up growing microgreens, to be honest.  I think the biggest factor would be right at the beginning, getting your name out there.  However, you can sell to your local community (deliver on a certain day of the week as per demand), to restaurants, to shops, and at farmer’s markets.  Its just a matter of getting the word out in the beginning then the recurring sales take over and you are golden!

  9. It is particularly amazing how much can be benefited from trading microgreens and consuming them. It seems like a perfect win-win scenario for farmers and consumers alike. From your explanation, it is clearly not something that is too difficult to start given its low start up cost.

    Not to mention its profit potential resulting from all year round growth and fast turnaround time. 

    I’m curious to know though, are there any special skill set required to set it up and make a full time income from growing these microgreens?

    • Thank you so much for your comments and in answer to your question:  no, not really.  Have you ever had a house plant that has lived for more than a year?  Well, then you can grow microgreens!  They grow so quickly that they are REALLY hard to mess up.

  10. Hey Darling; Your post has arisen my interest as I never thought this kind of farming was possible on a large scale where people could make money from it. I like to watch things grow, so I am always planting something.

     I shared the harvest with friends and family. I am sure that this post will serve as beneficial to many who are not eating healthy because of cost. They can now grow some Microgreen at home wherever they can find convenient.

    Do Microgreens include Asparagus and Porsline?

    DorcasW

    • Hiya Dorcas!  Now, you have me a bit stumped on asparagus because neither my mom nor I have ever grown it.  I do not believe it would be good for this because the edible shoots only come up in the second year, right?  What we are looking for is something that comes up fast and we can sell (or eat!) fast.  I can’t see why purslane wouldn’t work, though.  If you try it, do let me know how it came out!

  11. Hey, It is very useful guide to Make Money Growing Microgreens Indoors. I enjoy and learn a lot while reading your article on Micro Greens Indoor system. Your guide is very helpful for farmers like my father. I will share this post to my father to start a small Indoor Grow Systems. We will earn some extra money via your helpful guide by growing some crop. Keep it up.

    • Parveen – you have made my day!  I sure hope that your dad enjoys growing these and I wish you all the best!

  12. Low startup cost and fast return are the Saint Greal!

    Thanks for showing the world this healthy alternative. Getting organic food alternative is harder every day. As a business the numbers never lie (if you fail to scale there will be the auto consumption alternative – as I see it, there is no way to get wrong following this path).

    Is there an alternative to the fluorescent lighting? (Can I use LlED lights and get the same results?)

    • Hi Juan – yes, I totally agree with you.  It’s all about scalability.  Actually, to answer your question, LEDs would be better (although more expensive) than fluorescents.  I, personally, prefer LEDs.  There are some excellent LEDs available at Amazon and you can see them in one of the ads below the post.  I wish you all the best!

  13. Rather an interesting one to come by now. This is a very great post that I know that anyone would found to be great. Microgreens can really be interesting to grow but truly, I have never tried them out before. I have always been the garden type that farms largely. This is another insight into gardening for me. Thanks so much for sharing here

    • They are very commonly served at high-end restaurants and you can find them in quality stores.  You should keep your eyes open for them as this is a very lucrative opportunity.

  14. With the lacking of farmgrounds and less people having a garden to grow their own vegetables, this way off growing your own food could be the future off living self sufficient. I think this could be very interesting , not just for selling, but also for having your own food, easily grown, with plenty of nutrients 🙂

    • Very well said, Lizzy!  You are absolutely right.  With urban sprawl, we are going to be needing these types of setups.

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