Quinoa is a protein-rich grain that has become popular in recent years. It can be grown in water, making it a perfect crop for small urban gardens or even indoors on a windowsill if you’re short on outdoor space.
Today, I will explain how to grow Quinoa in water and provide some useful tips from my experience on how to grow them easily, and successfully!
Does Quinoa Grow in Water
First things first, let’s answer the question: does Quinoa grow in water? The answer is yes! Due to Quinoa being drought tolerant, it can thrive in shallow water, no more than 10 inches.
Quinoa is a South American grain and is traditionally grown in dry, high-altitude regions. However, it has been adapted to grow in various climates and conditions, including in water!
How to Grow Quinoa in Water
Now that we know Quinoa can grow in water let me explain how to actually grow it!
You’ll need the following:
- A container with drainage holes (I recommend a 5-gallon bucket)
- Quinoa seeds
Fill your container with water and soak your quinoa seeds overnight. This is important to help them germinate faster.
The next day, you’ll need to drain the water and rinse the seeds thoroughly. Please place them in your container filled with fresh water, ensuring that the water covers the seeds by about an inch.
Put your container in a sunny spot and check on it daily, you can regularly top up the water to keep the seeds under water.
After about a week, you should see the quinoa sprouts starting to emerge from the water. At this point, you can begin to reduce the amount of water you’re giving them and allow the top layer of soil to dry out between watering.
Harvest your Quinoa when the grain heads are dry, and the leaves are yellow. Cut the plants at the base and hang them upside down to finish drying. Once they’re completely dry, thresh the grain heads to remove the quinoa seeds.
Is Quinoa Easy to Grow?
You might be wondering how easy it is to actually grow, and I don’t blame you for asking that question!
I would say that Quinoa is pretty easy to grow, especially if you live somewhere that get’s a lot of sun every day. It’s a drought-tolerant plant, so it doesn’t need a lot of water, and it can even tolerate some poor-quality soil.
The only thing you need to be aware of is pests! Quinoa is susceptible to aphids and other pests, so check your plants regularly and take action if you see any pests.
How Long Does it Take to Grow Quinoa?
From start to finish, it takes about 3 months to grow Quinoa. This includes the time it takes for the seeds to germinate and the plants to mature.
3 months is the average; however, don’t panic if you head well into month 4. I’ve had several harvests of Quinoa that seem to have taken a bit longer to grow.
Can You Grow Quinoa from Quinoa?
One last thing I wanted to touch on is whether or not you can grow Quinoa from Quinoa.
The answer is yes, but it’s not a case of just dumping some quinoa seeds in water! You’ll need to do a little bit of prep work first, it’ll be worth it, I promise!
First, you’ll need to soak the Quinoa in water for 24 hours. This will help to soften the hard outer shell of the Quinoa and make it easier for the plant to germinate.
After soaking the Quinoa, you’ll need to rinse it and then plant it in moist soil, or as I touched on earlier, in water. If you go for the soil option, make sure you keep the soil moist, too much water can cause the Quinoa to rot.
You should see sprouts emerging within a week or so, and you can begin harvesting the Quinoa when the grain heads are dry, and the leaves are yellow.