Over the years, more and more people are deciding to grow chia in their own homes. Not only is chia beautiful when it blooms, but it also has high nutritional value.
It’s definitely one of the seeds I use in my kitchen regularly. From adding them to my morning smoothies and turning them into delicious chia puddings or chia jams to using them as an egg substitute. To options to add them to your life seems to be endless.
Growing Chia Seed Organically
Chia is super easy to grow. You might remember how easy those chia pets grew when you were just a small kid. If you never heard of chia pets before, this was what they looked like and I love them.
Before you start growing chia seeds, consider first when and where you’ll plant your seeds. Chia is a seasonal plant, and it is highly advisable to plant your seeds in early spring as they could easily die due to frost if planted in mid-winter.
As for the space needed, a chia plant grows taller and wider than your typical herb plants. It could even grow as tall as a small tree! That’s why it would need ample space for it to grow.
When planting, you don’t need to dig a deep hole in your garden. You just need to rake the soil or loosen it a bit by using your hands, before sprinkling the seeds. Lightly rake the soil afterward, or gently press the seeds to be covered in soil. You can also germinate the seeds in a pot before transplanting them once they start to sprout.
Keep your plants where there’s enough light for them to grow, and don’t forget to water them regularly. When adding mulch or compost, it is best to put it on top and let your plants feed on top of your soil. Moreover, make sure that the area where you’re growing chia seeds is weed-free. This is because chia’s don’t grow well with weeds.
Once your plants have grown over 3 inches, you can start replanting them. Make sure to leave at least 12 to 18 inches of space between your plants when transferring them to the garden. When using pots, make sure it is big enough to accommodate its size as it matures.
Harvesting Chia Seeds
You can start collecting individual flower heads when most of the petals fell off. Put the flowers on a drying rack or in paper bags and leave it open to let the air circulate as it dries.
Once the flowers are dry, crush the dried flower heads using your hands to separate the seeds. When you’re done, use a strainer to sift through the seeds.
If ever your chia’s are already dry and yellow, you can still harvest your seeds without losing a lot. What you can do is cut the flower heads using a pair of scissors. Put a bag underneath it to catch the seeds and flower heads as it drops. When done, you just need to shake the bag to separate the seeds.
Another way is by shaking the flower heads while holding a bag underneath it to catch the seeds. However, this can be a slow and tiring process, especially if you have a lot of chia plants. That’s why harvesting chia when it’s not yet fully dry is still the best alternative.
Growing chia seeds is easy and will definitely add to the beauty of your garden. Apart from that, you can be sure that your produce is organic and full of the nutritional value it promised, compared to the commercially-produced ones.
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Thanks for reading. I hope this information was helpful. Until next time!
Crazy cat lady, life and food lover, certified biologist, and holistic health coach.