Study on quality of indoor-grown microgreens cultivated on three different substrates

Microgreens are innovative products in the horticultural sector. They are appreciated by consumers thanks to their novelty and health-related benefits, having a high antioxidant concentration. This produce can be adopted for indoor production using hydroponic systems. The aim of the present work was to investigate the influence of three growing media (vermiculite, coconut fiber, and jute fabric) on yield and quality parameters of two basil varieties (Green basil—Ocimum basilicum L., Red basil—Ocimum basilicum var. Purpurecsens) and rocket (Eruca sativa Mill.) as microgreens.

Microgreens were grown in floating, in a Micro Experimental Growing (MEG) system equipped with LED lamps, with modulation of both energy and spectra of the light supplied to plants. Results showed high yield, comprised from 2 to 3 kg m−2. Nutritional quality varied among species and higher antioxidant compounds were found in red basil on vermiculite and jute.

Coconut fiber allowed the differentiation of crop performance in terms of sucrose and above all nitrate. In particular, our results point out that the choice of the substrate significantly affected the yield, the dry matter percentage and the nitrate concentration of microgreens, while the other qualitative parameters were most influenced by the species.

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Bulgari, Roberta & Negri, Marco & Santoro, Piero & Ferrante, Antonio. (2021). Quality Evaluation of Indoor-Grown Microgreens Cultivated on Three Different Substrates. Horticulturae. 10.3390/horticulturae7050096. 

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