Before he began growing microgreens during the summer of 2022, Dan Brimmer knew next to nothing about the plants. But after he tried one bite, he was instantly hooked.
“I couldn’t believe how great they tasted,” he told the Dubuque Telegraph Herald. “The sunflower’s nutty. The speckled pea tastes just like you’re biting into a peapod. The radish has a real spicy flavor.”
Brimmer raises speckled pea microgreens, rambo radish microgreens, sunflower microgreens, and broccoli microgreens at his Dubuque home and sells them at both Dubuque Farmers Market and Dubuque Winter Farmers Market.
“I’ve always wanted to be a farmer, but I can’t afford the farm,” Brimmer said with a laugh. “I heard about microgreens a few years back and decided to give it a go.” The growing process takes place in Brimmer’s basement, which always is kept between 68 and 80 degrees. It begins when seeds are germinated in plastic trays of dirt for several days, with trays stacked on top of one another and a brick placed on the top tray to help press the roots down into the dirt.
“I just planted these this last Sunday,” he said, gesturing to several trays of speckled peas whose shoots were peeking over the edge of their tray, “and these” — he pointed to a tray of taller plants — “will be harvested tomorrow.” The peas, unlike his other three plants, are grown in water rather than dirt.
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