Moldy Sprouts and Fungus on Microgreens

Mold on Sprouts and Fungus in Microgreens are 99.9% certainty just small, fine roots. The roots are natural but they may look like mold and mildew the first 2-4 days of growth.

Content in the article

Do you get Mold on Sprouts or Fungus on Microgreens? Here is the explanation and solution:

What is mold on Sprouts and fungus on Microgreens?

What are root hairs on Sprouts if not mold?

Which Sprouts and Microgreens form root hairs?

Lack of moisture causes more root hairs on sprouts

Healthy roots on Sprouts and Microgreens

Can you eat root hairs on Sprouts in the food?

Enjoy healthy roots and sprouts in a SproutPearl

Mold on Sprouts or Fungus on Microgreens

What is mold on Sprouts and fungus on Microgreens?

It is extremely rare for your crops, even Sprouts and Microgreens, to get mold, fungus or mildew. I can say with 99.9% certainty that it is fine roots that certain sprouts develop in the first few days of their growth.

You will especially see these fine roots from day 2-4 of cultivation. The fluffy, ‘moldy’ roots grow on sprouts of Broccoli, Rapeseed, Pink Cabbage, Radish, Sunflower, Mustard, Corn.

‘Moldy’ roots are particularly evident when your young sprouts are a little too dry or warm in the sprouting tray. They show you that it is time to rinse the sprouts. On damp sprouts, the fine roots stick closely to the main root and are therefore invisible.

Professionals call these fine ‘moldy’ roots root hairs. Others call the mould-like roots fimre roots. Yes, dear child has many names. The fact is that root hairs on the sprout types mentioned are natural roots, which are actually signs that your sprouts are healthy and have well-developed roots.

What are root hairs on Sprouts if not mold?

Root hairs are the technical term for finely branched roots on certain varieties of plants. Root hair looks confusingly similar to mold. They are visible when your sprouts have only been growing for 2-4 days. That is, when the root has just grown out of the seed. After the 4th day, the root hairs look more and more like roots.

Sprouts mold very rarely. If your sprouts otherwise smell fine, you can therefore count on the fact that mold is actually root hair.

You can tell the fine roots from mold by looking more closely at a sprout with root hairs. The root hairs only grow from the thicker central white root on the sprout at the bottom of the stem.

The fine root hairs attach to the large root when the sprouts are wet. Therefore, they are easiest to see before you rinse your sprouts. You’ll notice that if you don’t remember to rinse your sprouts often enough that they get too dry, they’ll grow more root hairs.

Root hairs on Sprouts and Microgreens

Which Sprouts and Microgreens form root hairs?

It is only certain sprouts and microgreens that get ‘mould’ and ‘mold’ on the roots – the so-called root hairs. They are: Broccoli – Chinese radish – Pink cabbage – Violet radish – Rapeseed – Red cabbage – Mustard – Sunflower + certain varieties of grain.

You can’t control whether a Spire grows root hairs. It is in the genes of the plant. Root hairs are smart because they allow the plant to absorb the bit of moisture that is in the top of the soil.

Other plants have chosen to bet on a single long root without root hairs, which can quickly shoot down to low-lying moisture, after which the long root forms lateral roots. These sprouts are: Fenugreek – Red clover – White clover – Lucerne, on the other hand, has a single root.

The two root types each have a different strategy, both of which are about the plant’s need for water, nutrition and adhesion. Plants just bet differently based on evolution’s success criteria.

Lack of moisture causes more root hairs on Sprouts

Your sprouts form more or fewer root hairs in the first 2-4 days of growth, depending on how dry they grow in the sprout tray.

I wrote earlier that you cannot choose whether or not a seedling forms root hairs because the type of root is in a plant’s DNA.

On the other hand, you can help your sprouts not to form unnecessarily long and many root hairs. Plants are ‘intelligent’ and never waste their energy. The trick is therefore to rinse the sprouts morning and evening every day.

When there is always a bit of moisture around your sprouts, the little plants see no reason to waste precious energy on forming more root nets. Ergo, the roots will be shorter than if the sprouts sense a lack of moisture.

Healthy roots on Sprouts and Microgreens

Healthy roots on Sprouts and Microgreens are always completely white and odorless. The roots of a plant cannot stand drying out. If the roots dry out, they turn brown on the surface. Brown, withered roots cannot absorb moisture.

If the roots of your Sprouts or Microgreens wither, you should check whether the sprouting tray ends properly close to the bottom. Maybe you should rinse your sprouts a little more often?

If the roots are black, it means that the roots are rotting. This can happen if the roots stand in water for a long time and therefore cannot get oxygen. Both brown and black roots must be cut off, otherwise they will make the sprout sick.

So aim for white roots. They are a clear sign that you are growing your sprouts correctly and that they are thriving in your sprout container.

How do you get mould off Sprouts and roots?

As explained in this article, the mould and fuzz may not be fungus. They may very well be natural root hairs that develop on Radish, Broccoli, Colza, Kale, Corn and Sunflower sprouts. These fuzzy roots are most visible in the first days of the cultivation.

If the sprouts smell like fresh salat your are pretty sure, the fuzz is just healthy roots. If so you should not try to remove the root hairs as the sprouts need them to grow well.

If you wish to serve sprouts without fuzzy roots, you can rinse them well in cool water just before serving. The water will make the roots cling to the main root and become invisible.

Can you prevent fuzzy, mouldy sprout roots?

If you are growing a sprout variety that form root hairs – the fuzzy, white, mouldy roots – then you can not prevent the roots from becoming fuzzy. You should not wish it either, as the fuzzy roots is a sign that the sprouts thrive.

But you can prevent the sprouts from developing unnecessarily long root hairs. You do this by simoly making sure the sprouts never get too dry. This is because the root hairs form in excess if the small plants grow in a too dry environment. So remember to keep the sprouts moist but never directly soaked.

As the sprouts grow bigger the very fine roots will grow into thicker roots.

SproutPearl sprouter by FRESH SPROUTS

Enjoy healthy roots and sprouts in a good sprouter

In order for your Sprouts and Microgreens to grow into healthy plants, they need a good moisture balance in the sprout box. The container must partly retain the moisture and still allow the plants to get oxygen.

Sprouts are only as healthy as their roots. If you have difficulty achieving a good moisture balance around the roots, I can recommend a SpirePerle tray.

The SpirePearl is a FRESH SPROUT design. I created it in 2017 when I missed a functional and beautiful sprouting container. The tray supports the plants’ needs for oxygen, moisture and drainage on their journey from dry seed to crisp, ready-to-eat plant.

You can grow both the small Sprouts and the larger Microgreens in it.

Can you eat root hairs on sprouts?

Yes, you can easily eat its sprouts with ‘moldy’ roots. That is, if you are sure that the mold is root hair – see more above.

The fluffy roots are edible as are all the roots of your sprouts grown in a clean sprout container.

Roots with root hairs may look a little wild, but they are full of plant fiber. They are neutral in taste, which makes them easy to slice for extra filling in recipes with raw greens.

I typically blend root hairs myself into smoothies, dips or spreads. Other times I eat them directly from the sprout tray together with the rest of the sprout.

When I take pictures of Sprouts and Microgreens, I trim and eat the root hairs while styling the setup, as the thin roots tend to turn brown quickly in dry air.

sprouts in any dish cucumber rolls fresh sprouts

Would you like to grow Sprouts?

Questions from other Readers

Why are my Sprouts full of white fuzzy fluff?

Some Sprouts grow very thin roots called Root hairs. This is not fungus nor mould. They are tiny roots that look like mould during the first 2-4 days of your sprouting. After that you can see they are actual roots.

Why is there fungus and mould on my Sprouts?

Fungus and mould on sprouts is most likely just tiny roots. These roots are most visible on Radish, Broccoli, Colza, Kale, Corn and Sunflower sprouts. They make the sprouts all fuzzy looking, but in closer inspection you can see the ‘mould’ is only formed on the roots.

How to I prevent mould and fungus in Sprouts?

To grow healthy sprouts free from mould and fungus, you must ensure high hygiene in the sprouter and only grow certified sprouting seeds. Do you still get mould? Maybe it is just root hairs. These form on Radish, Broccoli, Colza, Kale, Corn and Sunflower sprouts.

How do I get mould off my Sprouts?

First make sure the Mould is not just root hairs. These fuzzy looking roots are very fine, white roots that look like mould during the first 2-4 days of cultivation. They naturally develop on Radish, Broccoli, Colza, Kale, Corn and Sunflower sprouts.

Can you eat Mouldy Sprouts with fuzzy roots?

Yes, if you are you sure the mould on your sprouts is not Root hairs. You can tell root hairs from actual mould and fungus because your sprouts do NOT smell like dirt and the sprouts generally look healthy and crispy. Also Root hairs only form on the root harts of the sprouts. They naturally develop on Radish, Broccoli, Colza, Kale, Corn and Sunflower sprouts.

error: The Content of this site is Protected