Barley grass is one of the healthiest ‘green foods’ available, packed with essential vitamins, protein and calcium. It helps the digestive system function effectively, lowers cholesterol and blood pressure, prevents and combats arthritis, replenishes organic sodium in the stomach lining and dissolves calcium deposits in joints. It also boosts immune system, cleanses the body, invigorates the skin and increases energy. With so many health benefits, everyone should grow barley grass, which is usually consumed in the form of juice.
Purchase a packet of barley seeds from your local nursery or garden supply center. Place them in a container of water at room temperature and stir them well so they mix. Allow them to sit overnight or for 12 hours.
Drain the seeds, and place them outdoors in direct sunlight for eight to 10 hours. Rinse them again in water and drain. Repeat this process twice or thrice until the seeds sprout small roots, at least 1/8- to ¼-inch long.
Fill a seed starter tray that has adequate drainage holes with 1 ½ to 2 inches of good quality potting mix.
Plant the pre-sprouted seeds at least ½-inches apart, ensuring they are close but do not overlap. Do not push the seeds too deep--just lightly cover them with surrounding mix to ensure good seed-to-soil contact. You can also cover the tray with another seed starter tray, but make sure that too has drainage holes so it does not impede air circulation.
Water gently once or twice a day with a spray bottle to ensure the mix is evenly moist. Avoid over-watering, causing water to stand around the seeds, and never allow the mix to go dry.
Place the tray in a windowsill that has filtered or indirect sunlight or where temperature is 70 degrees. However, the grass will grow in slightly lower temperatures as well. Placing it in direct sunlight may cause mold.
Remove the top tray when the grass is 2 inches tall, which is generally after four or five days. At this stage, water the grass once a day.
Things You Will Need
- Barley seeds
- Seed starter trays
- Good quality potting mix
- Spray bottle
- Check the barley grass again nine days after planting to see if it is ready. However, harvest on the tenth day by cutting it off with scissors at soil level. Your grass will now be 6 to 8 inches tall.
- For best results, make juice from your homegrown barley grass immediately.