Quick and Easy Guide to Grow Lemon Balm Microgreens

Milosh Potikj | October 27, 2023 | 9 MIN READ

Growing your lemon balm microgreens can be a fun and rewarding experience that even the newest gardener can get involved with. Not only are microgreens delicious and packed full of nutrition, but they’re incredibly easy to grow in the home garden setting – perfect for beginners or experts alike!

This guide will show you everything you need to know about growing lemon balm microgreens, including how to select high-quality seeds, establish proper soil conditions, nurture healthy seedlings, and harvest your crop when it’s ready.

So let’s dive into this all-encompassing guide on growing your lemon balm microgreens!

Starting from Seed

Starting from Seed

Starting your journey to grow Lemon Balm Microgreens begins with selecting quality seeds. The quality of your seeds significantly impacts the growth and yield of your microgreens. Here are some key points to consider:

  • Selecting Quality Lemon Balm Seeds: Always choose high-quality seeds from a reputable seed company. Look for seeds specifically meant for microgreen production, which tend to be more reliable. Remember, larger seeds often result in stronger seedlings.
  • Preparing the Seed Tray: A seed tray with adequate drainage holes is essential. Fill the tray with a well-draining potting mix about 2 inches deep. Lightly pat down the soil mix to create a level surface.
  • Seed Broadcast Method: Scatter your seeds evenly across the surface of the soil (this is known as broadcasting). Aim for a rate of about 10-12 seeds per square inch. Lightly press seeds into the soil, but do not cover them.
  • Ideal Soil Temperatures for Germination: Lemon balm seeds prefer soil temperatures between 65-70°F (18-21°C). A heat mat can help maintain consistent soil temperature, promoting faster and more successful germination.

Nurturing Seedlings

Nurturing Seedlings

In the initial stages of growth, seedlings require careful attention and a conducive environment to flourish. The following guidelines will help you nurture your lemon balm seedlings from their delicate early days into robust, mature plants.

  • Understanding the Growth Rate

Lemon balm seedlings typically show a bit of growth within 7-14 days post-seeding, depending on the conditions. A steady growth rate is expected over 2-3 weeks, with seedlings gradually developing their true leaves. It's crucial to note that growth rates can vary depending on various factors such as light, temperature, and the quality of seeds and soil.

  • Importance of Light and Ideal Conditions

Lemon balm microgreens, like any other plants, require proper illumination to photosynthesize effectively. Light is fundamental for healthy growth, and natural sunlight is the best source of light for these plants. Locate your seed tray at a sunny window, preferably a south-facing window, to provide a consistent source of natural light. If natural light is insufficient, supplemental lighting with artificial lights can be used. Providing your seedlings with 12-16 hours of light daily is a good rule of thumb.

Caring for Your Seedlings

Caring for your seedlings involves diligently monitoring their needs and ensuring they're met. Daily attention is vital, but the actual tasks involved are quite simple. Here are some key care tips:

  • Watering: Lemon balm microgreens prefer to have consistently moist soil, but not waterlogged. Using a spray bottle, gently moisten the soil once or twice daily, or as needed. Be careful not to overwater, as this can lead to root rot and other harmful conditions.
  • Temperature and Air Circulation: Maintain an ambient temperature around 65-70°F (18-21°C). Adequate air circulation prevents bacterial growth and promotes healthy plant development. If possible, use a fan on a low setting to keep air moving around your seedlings.
  • Thinning Seedlings: If the seedlings are too crowded (more than 10-12 per square inch), thin them out. Crowded conditions can lead to poor air circulation and increased competition for resources.
  • Plant Health: Observe your seedlings regularly for any signs of disease or pest infestation. Browning leaves, stunted growth, or the presence of pests are all signs that your plants may be in distress. Early detection and treatment are crucial for maintaining the overall health of your microgreens.

Read More: Guide to Grow Shiso Microgreens

Growing Conditions

Growing Conditions

Lemon balm microgreens thrive best under specific conditions. Let's delve into understanding the ideal growing conditions that can help you grow robust and healthy microgreens.

Soil and Drainage

The right soil and proper drainage are fundamental to growing lemon balm microgreens successfully. Let's understand these aspects in detail:

  • Soil: Lemon Balm Microgreens prefer seed-starting soil or well-draining potting mix, which is light and airy, promoting optimal root growth. These soils are typically rich in organic matter, providing the essential nutrients for your microgreens. Soil pH should be neutral to slightly acidic (6.0-7.0) for optimal growth.
  • Drainage: Adequate drainage is crucial in preventing waterlogged soil and root rot, two conditions that can seriously harm your microgreens. Using a container with sufficient drainage holes ensures excess water escapes, helping maintain the soil's optimal moisture level. A favorite container among microgreen growers is shallow trays or 10- or 20-row seedling trays with adequate drainage holes. As a rule of thumb, the soil should be kept moist but not drenched.

Light Requirements and Natural Sunlight Hours

The light requirement of Lemon Balm Microgreens is a crucial factor influencing their growth and development. These plants thrive under full sunlight to partial shade conditions. In an indoor setup, place the containers near a bright window where they can receive at least six hours of sunlight daily. South-facing windows are ideal since they provide the most sunlight throughout the day.

However, in the absence of sufficient natural light, artificial lights like fluorescent lamps or LED grow lights can be employed. Consider providing supplemental lighting during winter months or if growing in a space with limited natural light.

Choosing the Right Container

The selection of the right container plays a vital role in growing healthy Lemon Balm Microgreens. The container's size and depth are important considerations since microgreens don't require a lot of depth to grow, but they do need ample space to spread out. Shallow trays, no more than 3 inches deep, are typically used for growing microgreens. Containers such as 10- or 20-row seedling trays or even repurposed plastic containers can be utilized effectively.

Remember to ensure your chosen container has adequate drainage holes to prevent waterlogging. When possible, select a container with a clear plastic dome or lid. This serves as a mini-greenhouse, retaining humidity and warmth and promoting faster germination.

Related: Guide to Grow Parsley Microgreens

Ideal Growth Conditions

Lemon Balm Microgreens thrive best under certain growth conditions. The ideal soil temperature for these seedlings varies between 60 and 70°F (15 and 21°C). Cooler conditions may slow the growth rate, while overly hot conditions can cause the plants to wilt or the soil to dry out quickly.

When it comes to positioning, these microgreens prefer a location with adequate sunlight and air circulation. Placing the container near a sunny window or using supplemental lighting will provide the required light for photosynthesis. Supplemental lighting is especially useful in winter or when natural light is insufficient.

Maintain a humidity level that encourages growth but doesn't invite fungal growth. A plastic dome over your container can help maintain the right level of humidity until germination.

Lastly, maintaining excellent hygiene is critical to prevent diseases. Regularly clean your containers, use fresh soil for each planting, and ensure you're using clean water for watering.

Remember, your seedlings are living entities, and like all living things, they respond well to love and care, too. Patience and daily attention will help you grow robust and healthy lemon balm microgreens.

Harvesting Your Crop

Harvesting Your Crop

The joy of growing your lemon balm microgreens is truly realized when it's harvest time. Harvesting these fresh, fragrant greens is straightforward, but timing is a crucial factor. Let's go through the process in detail:

  • When to Harvest: Lemon balm microgreens can be harvested when they reach about 2-3 inches tall, typically in 1-3 weeks. Harvesting is best done when the first set of "true leaves" emerge, which are the leaves that appear after the initial seedling leaves.
  • How to Harvest: Use a sharp knife to cut the microgreens just above the soil level. Be careful not to pull the plants as it can disturb the roots of the remaining plants. Cutting in the morning, when the plants are well hydrated, ensures the freshest harvest.
  • Storing Your Harvest: After harvesting, rinse the microgreens gently and pat them dry. It's best to use them right away, but if need be, they can be stored in a container or ziplock bag in the refrigerator. A paper or kitchen towel can be added to absorb excess moisture, extending their shelf life. Avoid washing the greens before storing them, as moisture can lead to faster spoilage.

Health Benefits of Lemon Balm

Health Benefits of Lemon Balm

Lemon Balm Microgreens offer numerous health benefits that are worth noting.

  1. They are packed with antioxidants, which help to combat oxidative stress and boost overall health.
  2. Known for their calming properties, Lemon Balm Microgreens can help reduce anxiety and promote better sleep.
  3. They are good for digestion, aiding in alleviating digestive discomforts like bloating and gas.
  4. These microgreens are beneficial for heart health, as they help to lower blood pressure levels.
  5. Loaded with Vitamin C, they boost your immune system, helping the body fight off infections and diseases.
  6. Lemon Balm Microgreens have anti-inflammatory properties, offering relief in conditions like arthritis.
  7. They also have antibacterial properties, which can help prevent and treat infections.

Find out more: Steps to Grow Endive Microgreens

Using Your Lemon Balm Microgreens

Using Your Lemon Balm Microgreens

Lemon Balm Microgreens are not only a powerhouse of nutrition but are also extremely versatile in their usage. Their mildly citrusy flavor, combined with a hint of mint, makes them a perfect addition to a variety of dishes and traditional remedies.

  • Salad and Other Culinary Uses: Lemon Balm Microgreens are a delightful addition to salads, offering a burst of freshness and flavor. They can also be used as an aromatic garnish for fish and poultry dishes, tossed into a stir-fry, or used to infuse oils and vinegars. The refreshing citrusy flavor is also a great addition to fruit salads, smoothies, and iced teas.
  • Lemon Balm Microgreens in Traditional Medicine: Traditionally, lemon balm has been used for its medicinal properties. When used in the form of tea, it can help relieve digestive ailments and reduce anxiety and insomnia. Its antibacterial and antiviral properties make it beneficial for topical application on minor wounds or insect bites.
  • Other Interesting Uses of Lemon Balm: Apart from its culinary and medicinal uses, Lemon Balm Microgreens can also be used in making fragrant, homemade soaps and candles. Some gardeners also use lemon balm as a companion plant, as its strong scent helps to deter certain pests.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you grow lemon balm Microgreen?

Growing Lemon Balm Microgreens is a fairly simple process. It starts with selecting high-quality Lemon Balm Microgreen seeds and planting them in a well-draining soil mix or seed-starting soil. The seeds are typically sown thickly in a container and usually sprout within 7-14 days.

How quickly does lemon balm grow?

Lemon Balm Microgreens grow at a moderate pace, with most seedlings sprouting within 7-14 days of planting. Optimal growth is often observed in 2-3 weeks, with the plants reaching a height of about 2-3 inches, ready for harvest.

What is the fastest microgreens to grow?

The growth speed of microgreens can vary based on the type and growing conditions, but some varieties are known to grow faster than others. For instance, radish and arugula microgreens are often ready for harvest in as little as 7-10 days, making them some of the fastest-growing microgreens.

How can I make my microgreens grow faster?

To hasten the growth of your microgreens, ensure they receive adequate light and warmth, maintain consistent moisture levels, and use a nutrient-rich soil or growing medium. Remember, each type of microgreen may have its own specific needs for optimal growth rate.


Growing Lemon Balm Microgreens at home is an activity that is both rewarding and beneficial to your health. These nutrient-packed greens offer a delightful burst of freshness and flavor to your meals and a host of health benefits. From seed to harvest, the journey is filled with learning and satisfaction.

With patience and care, even novice gardeners can enjoy the process and the results. Whether you enjoy them in your salads, as a garnish, or in your homemade remedies, Lemon Balm Microgreens are an excellent addition to your indoor gardening project. Happy Gardening!


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