Sunserene Quevedo Local Expert on Micro Greens and why we should add this to our Gardens!

Sunserene Quevedo Local Expert on Micro Greens and why we should add this to our Gardens!

What takes little space, Extremely easy to grow and really really nutricious and perfect for an aquaponic or hydroponic system you can grow in your backyard and this maybe become necessary too! As safeway loads us up with GMO food poisons the local natuaral food store is booming and rightly so too!! It make lots of sense to understand we can all do this and The Answer is Micro Greens!

We are so lucky to have a local expert to teach us on this important contribution in the road to self sufficiency!

Sun’s Microgreens

Written by Sonia R. Martinez on 25 January 2013.

Freshly harvested sprouts at Sun’s Microgreens.Sunserene Quevedo is a very enterprising young woman with a mission to teach everyone she meets about the benefits of microgreens in our diets. The project started in a small way with Sunserene’s love for gardening and her desire to start eating a bit healthier: she began in her bedroom with a growing tray sitting in a tin pan for drainage, a bit of soil, sunflower seeds and a spray bottle. After a few days the seeds started sprouting and before she knew it, she was clipping tender shoots and adding them to salads, wraps, and sandwiches.

The excitement of seeing what could be done in even a small space in her bedroom fueled her drive, and very soon she was checking out books at the library, searching on the internet and applying all she was learning to her eating healthier project.

Almost a year ago, Sun got a tent set up in her backyard and started several more trays. Her father, who is very supportive of her efforts, built her some benches for the germinating and growing area and a larger table for processing and packing. Before long, her business, Sun’s Microgreens, was born.

Several studies have found that microgreens from 25 different vegetables contain higher concentrations of nutrients, beneficial enzymes, phytonutrients, vitamins and carotenoids than when consuming the mature vegetable — all of that packed into deliciously fresh, sweet, tender green, red, purple or yellow shoots. Further studies conclude that microgreens of amaranth, cilantro, red cabbage, radish and mustard contain four times the amount of nutrients, and for cilantro in particular, more Vitamin E than the mature plant.

Sunserene Quevedo in her sprout nursery.At this time Sun’s Microgreens mixes are the ‘Special Mix’ which usually contains buckwheat, mustard, green and purple radish, amaranth, broccoli, pea shots and sunflower; and the ‘Rainbow Mix’ which is beets, buckwheat, sunflower and corn shoots.

The seedlings need a good balance of warm and sunny weather mixed with some humid and rainy days. Since the seedlings can’t stand soaking, her growing area is under cover, open to the breezes and some morning sun. By rotating her growing trays all seedlings get the benefits of the sunshine. On very sunny days she mists her plants a bit more often than on overcast days. From sowing to harvest it takes approximately one week, and Sun harvests in the early morning or the evening before going to market. Her growing season is year around.

Through trial and error Sun has found that she needs to grow the sunflowers under cover because the birds love them. But all the other seedlings are in open growing trays and neither birds nor insects seem to bother them. Her most unusual produce is corn shoots: they are grown in the dark, and the tender sweet shoots are a beautiful bright yellow.

Sun orders some of her seeds online but buys most of them in area health food stores. For seeds that she can’t find locally she is letting some of her seedlings go to seed in the yard and hoping to save her own.

With the other plants growing in her yard Sun follows the Korean Natural Farming methods using IMOs; no fertilizers, chemicals or pesticides are used. At this time she is growing celery, basil, squash, mustard greens, amaranth, and bok choy, and would like to expand with mini lettuce, herbs and different varieties of basil and parsley.

Sun presents demonstrations at farmers markets and anywhere else she is asked to educate the public regarding the benefits of making microgreens a part of our diet. She has a display board at the markets with photos of the microgreens and explanations of their health benefits.

Sun explains “Now that there are more studies about microgreens which prove their nutrient value, I want to educate people about them because many are trying to live a healthy lifestyle and get the most for their money. I think this is more than a fad and could really catch on soon not only in restaurants but as a household staple”

You can find Sun’s Microgreens in several area restaurant menus and you can buy them yourself in 3 and 6 ounce bags on Saturdays starting in early February at the Kino’ole Farmers Market in Hilo, and on Sundays at the Volcano’s Farmers Market. Or you can contact her directly for special orders. She will deliver within certain areas but the cost will be a little bit higher.

Sun’s Microgreens Sunserene Quevedo 808/339-1855


Sonia R. Martinez, the Hawai’i Homegrown Food Network regular farmers market reporter, is a cookbook author and freelance food writer for several publications in Hawai’i, including The Hamakua Times of Honoka’a. She is a regular contributor to Ke Ola Magazine; and has her own food & garden blog at Sonia Tastes Hawaii.


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