Sprouting equipment

I'll attempt to briefly describe the equipment I use for sprouting here.

Sprout farm overview


Providing young seedlings with the best environment for germination is not trivial - and getting everything right helps provide good yields throughout the year.

Fortunately, many sprouts require rather similar conditions for germination - moisture, warmth, light, ventilation, nutrients, a growing medium - and a container.



I use standard seed trays - or seed tray inserts. These have drainage holes in the bottom. They are placed inside standard gravel trays.

More details are available here.

Growing medium

I use soil as a growing medium.

One of the main problems with soil is that is can be messy.

I may experiment with hydroponic media at some stage. However soil's convenience and availability seem likely to make it hard to beat.


So far I have not found it necessary to use fertilisers, pesticides, herbicides, anti-fungal agents or disinfectants.

I have experimented with using a kelp-based fertiliser - but there are currently appear to be no clear benefits to doing so.


Sprout watering is done mainly using an automated "micro irrigation" system.

More details are available here.


Heated propagators

Heat helps seeds many seeds to germinate more rapidly.

I supply heat by using electrical propagation units. These are connected to the mains electricity supply.

They are simple 12V units with no thermostat. Each exactly fits one of my standard seed trays.

Unfortunately, the combination of heat, an enclosed environment, and reduced ventilation can encourage moulds and bacterial growth - so these units are only used during the germinition phase.

The covers on these units are incompatible with my misting system - and they have no drainage facilities.

If I'm away for very long these units are left empty. If my schedule permits I leave them on - and water them manually.

Covered, germinating trays tend to have reduced watering needs - since there is no established root system to suck existing moisture out very efficiently - and losses through convection and evaporation are minimized by the presence of the cover.


My sprout farm is positioned on shelving placed on an indoor window ledge.

The sun provides all needed light.

Go back to Tim's sprout farm.

Tim Tyler | tim@tt1.org | http://sprouting.org/