Growing barley grass at home is as simple and inexpensive as growing wheat grass, and some people find they prefer the taste of barley grass juice to wheat grass juice, for its milder flavor. Barley sprouts and the juice you can make are a natural antioxidant as well as a natural metabolism booster. Follow the steps below to begin growing your own barley grass at home and make homemade barley grass juice!
Types Of Barley Grass
There are many types of barley grass and there are different ways to classify each type. The best way to distinguish barley grass types is to count the grains when the grass is fully grown. Each type has a different number of grains. The different types don’t change the composition of the grass itself, so the type of barley grass you choose has little effect on the final juice.
SUPPLIES for Growing Barley Grass
- Jar or bowl for soaking
- 1 cup Barley Seeds
- 10x10-inch Clean growing tray, with holes for draining:
- Plastic food tray from deli, thoroughly washed
- Growing tray from garden supply store
- Decorative planter (for growing ornamental grass)
- Soil enriched with fertilizer, compost, or azomite, if necessary
- Plastic lid with air holes or extra tray to use as tray cover
How to Measure Barley Seeds for Your Tray Size
1 cup of barley seeds (½ lb) is enough for a 10x10-inch tray and grows enough grass to make about 10 ounces of barley grass juice. If your tray is a different size, adjust the amount of seeds accordingly.
INSTRUCTIONS FOR GROWING BARLEY GRASS
- Follow instructions for Sprouting Barley and sprout just until tails begin to show. Avoid over-sprouting or sprouts may not root in the soil for growing barley grass.
- Add a ½- to 1-inch layer of soil to growing tray.
- Water gently to moisten soil. Avoid overwatering to the point puddles form.
- Sprinkle seeds evenly across soil, breaking up clumps as needed.
- Sprinkle loose soil over seeds.
- Place tray in an area with indirect light, at 60-80ºF.
- Cover with a plastic lid with air holes to create a greenhouse effect. Make sure lid is tall enough to allow grass to grow 1-2 inches.
- Water daily, avoid overwatering. Using a spray bottle is a good watering method until seeds root and grass begins to grow.
- After grass is 1-2 inches, remove cover, about day 4.
- Continue to water daily, gently to avoid damaging young grass.
Harvesting Barley Grass for Juicing
- Harvest grass at any point, usually about 6 inches tall, for juicing.
- Use scissors to cut grass just above roots.
- Juice immediately.
- If desired, let the grass grow a second blade, for a second harvest. Nutritional content of grass from the second harvest is much lower than grass from the first harvest.