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Wally Richards
Wally Richardshttp://www.gardenews.co.nz
Wally Richards has been a gardening columnist for over 30 years. Check his websites - for gardening news and tips visit www.gardenews.co.nz. For mail order products visit www.0800466464.co.nz. Wally also has a gardening problem help line on 0800 466 464.

Gardening with Wally Richards: Fresh greens in winter

Like to grow some fresh, highly nutritious greens this time of the year when sunlight hours are short and stuff is slow to grow?

This is also a way to be able to have emergency healthy food when things are not so good.

How you achieve this is to sprout seeds for eating, often referred to as ‘Sprouts’.

In the past sprouts were done in an Agee preserving jar with a screen sieve.

You would place a few seeds into the jar and cover with non chlorinated water and sit on window sill in kitchen.

Each day you would tip the water out using the sieve like screen to stop the seeds falling out.

Fresh water would be added and the above would be repeated daily till the seeds had sprouted and reached a nice size which you then used in sandwiches or salads.

Very nutritious and very simple to do.

Nowadays its even easier with a four tier seed sprouter from Egmont Seeds.

Called Mr Fothergills Kitchen Seed Sprouter they sell for $20.00 here.

You have 4 sprouting levels which means you can sprout 4 different types of seeds or mixes at any one time.

A small amount of seeds is placed in each level and water is applied to the top tier, then because of sprouter outlet caps in the base of each level (which can be adjusted to allow a amount of water flow to next level) the water works its way down through the tiers.

Then finally the water ends up in the reservoir where you can either dispose of it or use it a second time round.

Doing this alone with the sprouter on the kitchen window sill will give you very nutritious greens to add to your winter diet.

But you can change then into super sprouts by adding a few mils of Magic Botanic Liquid (MBL)to the non-chlorinated water.

MBL is rich in humate and fulvic acid along with minerals and elements which the sprouting seeds will absorb as they germinate and grow.

Incredibly good for your health and great for those wishing to trim up a bit before summer.

One of the problems is that our traditional Super Market food chain is poor in nutritional values unless you are growing a good amount of vegetables yourself naturally.

This means when you cook up a meal from supermarket produce and have to add condiments to make it taste ok (Home grown produce tastes great and does not need condiments to fool your body into accepting it)

So you eat a full meal of supermarket produce and when you are finished you are likely to still feel a bit hungry.

Actually you are not hungry but that is the feeling you get as your body is saying, ‘Thanks for the stuff but where are the minerals and elements that I need to work properly?’

So inadvertently you pig out on potato chips or something to squash the feeling of having not eaten enough.

Now you are going to put on some extra pounds and your body still is not satisfied as he need nutrition not food stuffing.

Sprouting seeds with MBL is a excellent way to get the goodness your body needs to be healthy, it is in the same top food tier as ‘Smoothies’ and wheat grass juice (done with minerals)

Now to get the seeds to sprout we go and have a look at Kings Seeds. They have a good range of seeds and seed mixes most of which are certified organic

Examples from their web site are:

Alfalfa: Our most popular sprout with a delicious nutty flavour. Excellent for gourmet salads, omelettes and sandwiches.

High in fibre, vitamins, minerals and proteins. Research has found Alfalfa fibre pushes cholesterol out of the arteries while its saponins also scrub and dissolve it.

The sprouts are many times more nutritious if exposed to the sunlight about the fifth day after germination. They can then be harvested.

Organic Energy mix: Alfalfa, Flax, Rocket, Broccoli Raab, Red Clover and Fennel.

A tasty, aromatic and invigorating blend that stimulates the body and digestive system.

As the Flax and Rocket are both mucilaginous-forming seeds when germinating, particular care needs to be shown to rinse and drain well in the first few days.

At harvest, the Fennel sprout will not be as developed as the others but both its seed husk and sprout should be used.

Organic High Health mix: A tasty nutritious mix of different brassica including Green Broccoli, Pak Choi, and Tuscan Black Kale.

High in vitamins and soluble fibre for cleansing the digestive system and building resistance to bowel and bladder disease. Seeds are easy to sprout reaching maturity using rinse and drain method in 6-10 days.

Organic Vita plus blend: Alfalfa 40% Red Clover 30% Daikon Radish 10% Radish 10% Broccoli Raab 10%

Highly nutritious blend of sprouts, rich in minerals, amino acids and antioxidants combining the mild tastes of Alfalfa and Red Clover with the spicy bite of Broccoli Raab, Radish Daikon and Radish.

Organic Stir Fry Combo: Contains Chickpea (Cicer arietinum) , Lentil (Lens culinaris), Mung (Vigna radiata).

Delicious, succulent and nutty sprout blend to stir fry in Asian dishes or to eat raw in salads and sandwiches.

Easily digested and highly nutritious with heaps of Vitamins B1 and B2, Iron, Potassium, Folic Acid and Protein.

Soluble fibre helps break down cholesterol, lower blood pressure and regulate blood sugars.

Initially soak seeds for several hours then drain. Rinse 3-4 times daily for 3-4 days. Harvest when sprouts are length of the seed (15mm) and store in fridge in a covered container.

Note, seeds which are mucilaginous-forming seeds when germinating you toss the water and MBL mix and do a fresh lot to get rid of the mucilaginous.

Otherwise be healthy this winter with tasty heath treats from sprouts.

Store unused seeds in a glass jar with lid in the fridge where they will keep happily for years ready to use any time.

Products mentioned are from Wallys Range of products and can be found in some garden shops or by Mail Order on www.0800466464.co.nz

Problems ring me at: Phone 0800 466464
Garden Pages and News at www.gardenews.co.nz
Shar Pei pages at www.sharpei.co.nz
Mail Order products at www.0800466464.co.nz

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