View Full Version : Wheatgrass, outdoors..
08-30-2009, 04:03 AM
I am wanting to grow wheatgrass outdoors, but on Google I can't even find one guide on how to do it!!
What I would like to know is when am I able to plant it outdoors (which month or season). And when would it be ready to harvest?
I'm just desperate to have PROPER wheatgrass juice - not the sweet and sickly juice from the indoor trays.
Any help would be much appreciated!
08-30-2009, 09:04 PM
Well you could probably plant it outside anytime from mid-spring to mid-fall with much success.
What do you think the difference will be growing it outdoors? I grow all mine outdoors with a mix of local and potting soil and it still does have that sickly sweet taste. I've never had juice bar wheatgrass but as long as you chew and suck the grass the taste isn't overwhelming.
Wheatgrass only takes about 7-9 days to grow to harvest length starting the day that you soak them.
08-31-2009, 02:26 AM
hi Tsurugi_Oni, thanks for replying.
If it only takes 7-9 days outisde I assume you are using trays to grow the wheatgrass?
I'm wanting to plant the seeds directly into the soil of my vegetable patch, which I've read from someone takes 200 days to harvest. I'm not sure how true this is, but it's definately months rather than days. The difference to growing it outside in soil (naturally) rather then somewhat artificially indoors, is you don't get any mold or the sickly sweet taste that comes with indoor trays. The mold and the sweet taste are both interlinked with eachother. Outdoor wheatgrass is the opposite taste - bitter. Because of this, you could easily down a 20 ounces of wheatgrass juice from outdoors without any problem, unlike indoor wheatgrass where you adviced to just a few ounces. And if you don't believe me, do a search on google. The nausea effect of indoor wheatgrass in NOT detox. This is why, until I have grown my own, I prefer taking a Raw Grass powder as this has been made using outdoor wheatgrass.
Anyway, if anyone has any experience with outdoor wheatgrass I would really appreciate it! I think I will plant now, but would like to know how often does it need watering, what pests will try and eat it etc. I assume the seeds wouldn't need soaking for outdoors?
08-31-2009, 06:30 AM
which I've read from someone takes 200 days to harvest.
It might take that long before you can harvest the seeds, but we are talking about the greens here. The grass itself like most other plants has the highest nutritional value when it's very young.
Sure you can juice it when it's a bit older too, but you will have to drink a lot more of it to get the same nutrients.
It's true that it will take a bit longer for it to grow if you plant it in the ground the regular way, but certainly not 200 days.
I've actually never had a problem with mold on my wheat grass. A lot of people seem to think that there's mold on the seedlings but the fact is that it's most likely just tiny roots which can look a bit like mold.
08-31-2009, 07:51 AM
The grass does 200 days to grow the natural way, outside directly in the soil. You plant it in the autumn and pick it the following spring. I know what you mean about the younger greens having higher nutrition, but it's not the same comparison as wheatgrass indoors to wheatgrass outdoors. Outdoor wheatgrass has far higher nutritional content and much more chlorophyll. You would actually need less outdoor juice than indoor tray juice.
In the past I would never of thought this, but the raw dried wheatgrass powder is definately better than indoor grown wheatgrass juice.
08-31-2009, 10:48 AM
Let me break it down.
Wheatberries = Wheat, Wheat = Wheatgrass Seeds
What you're talking about is 200 days till you harvest the SEEDS. That's not the purpose of growing wheatgrass, the point is to eat the very young blades of wheatgrass because they're still juicy and full of phytonutrients at that stage.
Wheat is basically the stuff you grow on your lawn except it's specially selected for it's large seeds. And the young shoots are especially juicy.
You only get mold in your tray grown stuff if you don't drain it right and you use potting soil. Potting soil is not porous enough to allow proper drainage of water, and so mold tends to form. Really you can grow wheatgrass to about 4 inches without any soil because you harvest at a very young stage @ which it's still gettin a lot of nutrition from the seed.
08-31-2009, 11:39 AM
I've read again, yes at 200 days is at the reproduction stage, but this is when (for outdoor grass at least) is when the grass it at it's peak of nutrition. but yes, indoor grass may be different. but regardless of how long it takes outside, it's far superior to indoor grass, because there is no mold and nutritionally it is better than indoor grass. just read this:
If it is grown in trays, it likely has high levels of mold and the mold (not the wheatgrass juice) makes people sick. If it is grown outdoors in an environment with cool nights, it likely has no detectable levels of mold and can be used in any amount.
The reason molds are a problem is that they release poisons called mycotoxins which are very unpredictable. There are over 400 types and they effect different people in different ways, you can read more about this here:
The reason your question is so difficult to research is that 2 people could go to a juice bar, drink the same shot of wheatgrass juice and one might love it while they other gets very sick. Read the Wikipedia article and you will also know that this is caused by the unpredictable nature of mycotoxins.
You how do you get wheatgrass juice without mold and mycotoxins? Simple. Grow it outdoors, during the natural season in an environment with cool nights. Wheatgrass outdoors grows slowly in the field over 120 days to the harvesting height for wheatgrass juice of 7" - 11". In this environment, the combination of low density planting, cool nights, UV rays and natural air, soil and water produces a clean plant (no detectable molds) and juices into a clean juice.
When you take the same seed that takes 120 days to grow outdoors and put it into a tray or hothouse, everything changes. The environment is too hot, too humid, the soil is too shallow and the plant struggles to survive. Interestingly, plants have a couple of instinctual responses. One response is to turn toward the sun. Another instinct is survival. When a plant is under stress, it seeks to go to seed as quickly as possible to survive. The stressful conditions in tray grown grass cause the wheatgrass to grow abnormally quickly. Wheatgrass (using the same seed) grows to harvesting height in just 10 days indoors rather than 120 days outdoors. At the same time, these conditions are perfect growing environments for naturally occuring molds (fungi) and these attach themselves to the plant and grow from the soil upward into the plant. Every grower has seen it, knows about it and has tried to cut above it, soak the seed, create air movement, use fungicide, citricide, hydrogen peroxide, bleach or even hot sand to control the mold. Unfortunately, once it is there, it cannot be removed.
Here is the reality. Indoor grown wheatgrass juice virtually always has mold and large amounts "may" make you very ill. Outdoor grown wheatgrass in a region with cool nights has no detectable molds and can be used in virtually unlimited amounts and over long periods of time.
This is why i will never grow wheatgrass indoors again and will only juice fresh outdoor grass or buy a raw grass powder that has been dried with outdoor grass.
08-31-2009, 12:05 PM
Thats simply not true.
The thing about stress and seeding is true. But I garden and I know a decent amount about plants and I can tell you all the rest is pretty much bullshit. I've grown it outdoor trayless and I haven't seen any noticeable difference.
Sure plants are nutritionally at their peak at seed. But all the nutrition is in their SEEDS. When plants Bolt due to stress it puts all of its nutrients into making seeds. Which make tough, woody, bitter stems and leaves. If you want to see an example I'll go out to the garden and take comparison pictures.
Wheatgrass is wheat sprouts, and there's no way that grass takes 4 months just to sprout to about 5-8 inches. And like I said by the time you first harvest wheatgrass the plant will still be heavily feeding off the the seed's food stores.
08-31-2009, 03:13 PM
I'm no gardening expert, but everywhere I go online says wheatgrass takes 200 days grow outside. The raw grass powder I'm taking at the moment is Greener Grasses, and it says on the bottle and online that the grasses used are grown outside for months - they wouldn't make this up, why would they?
Maybe you are not taking into account the season you are supposed to plant the wheatgrass seeds for outside? Apparently you can only do this is the autumn, and it will grow slowly through the winter and picked in the spring. I'm guessing this is why is does take so long to grow just 7-10 inches, because of the cold climate, and less sun exposure. Surely you could compare this to lawn grass, you need to continually cut it during the Spring and Summer, but in the Fall and Winter you don't need to because it's too cold and not enough sun exposure to grow. This would probably vary though on where you live. But outside wheatgrass doesn't survive in a hot climate, which is why it is not grown during the summer.
08-31-2009, 03:46 PM
Is it that supplement? If it is it has 6 different types of grasses in it, and only one of them is the kind that's was widely approved for juicing.
Hard Winter Wheat is what you're talkin about. Like you said I'm not sure what zone they're growing in so it could be that their sowing date is very cold compared to where I live.
I personally have only sprouted the Hard Spring variety. But I couldn't imagine being able to use mature wheat for juicing. There would of been MANY more companies in the field profiting from what would normally be sold as cheap hay.
All I know is that the spring variety grows really well from early spring to late autumn. I also use greenhouse principles to maintain good conditions. It's worked for me very well so far.
09-01-2009, 10:48 AM
Hi Tsurugi_Oni - i think we could go on debating this for another few days!! The bottom line is, I'l plant some outside in the next week and see how it grows.
Yes, the Greener Grasses in the link is what I take. I know it's not just wheatgrass - their are other grasses in it, but that's ok with me anyway! I take it mainly because of 2 things - it specifically says it's raw (dried below 100 degrees) and that it's been grown outside for months making it the most natural grass you can get. And it's 100% organic! What more could you want! The only problem is it's very pricey!
09-01-2009, 02:33 PM
I just realized in the QnA that they harvest it before the plants seed..... lol.
Powered by vBulletin® Version 4.1.4 Copyright © 2013 vBulletin Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved.