Sprouts, Microgreens, and Baby Leaf Vegetables

A special issue of Agriculture (ISSN 2077-0472). This special issue belongs to the section "Crop Production".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 April 2024) | Viewed by 9579

Special Issue Editors


E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Lithuanian Research Centre for Agriculture and Forestry, Institute of Horticulture, Kaunas Street 30, 54333 Babtai, Lithuania
Interests: microgreens; lighting; light-emitting diodes; antioxidant; leafy greens; controlled environmental agriculture
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear colleagues,

The demand for fresh and functional food is constantly increasing. In addition, vegetables are an excellent source of bioactive compounds with health-promoting properties. Emerging specialty crops such as sprouts, microgreens, and baby leaf vegetables are attractive for consumers because of their shapes, colours, taste, and small leaves for easy preparation to consume. Furthermore, they can be quickly produced in controlled-environment agriculture systems all year. While the growth, metabolism, and safety implications of sprouts, microgreens, and baby leaf greens have been studied, the abundance of species and varieties and new technologies in horticulture expand the research. 

Therefore, for this Special Issue, articles (original research papers, perspectives, hypotheses, opinions, reviews, modelling approaches, and methods) that focus on sprouts, microgreens, and baby leaf production—including agronomical, physicochemical, biochemical, and microbiological evaluation at harvest and shelf life—are welcomed.

Dr. Viktorija Vaštakaitė-Kairienė
Dr. Giedrė Samuolienė
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Agriculture is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • controlled environment agriculture
  • specialty crops
  • leafy greens
  • mini greens
  • vegetables

Published Papers (4 papers)

Order results
Result details
Select all
Export citation of selected articles as:

Research

15 pages, 1570 KiB  
Article
ZnO Nanoparticle Size-Dependent Effects on Swiss Chard Growth and Nutritional Quality
by Jurga Miliauskienė, Aušra Brazaitytė, Rūta Sutulienė, Martynas Urbutis and Simona Tučkutė
Agriculture 2022, 12(11), 1905; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture12111905 - 12 Nov 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1684
Abstract
Understanding the interactions between nanoparticles (NPs) and plants is crucial in comprehending the impact of nanotechnology on agriculture, with a focus on plant toxicity concerns and risks to human health. Zinc (Zn) belongs to the micronutrients with poor bioavailability, though this element is [...] Read more.
Understanding the interactions between nanoparticles (NPs) and plants is crucial in comprehending the impact of nanotechnology on agriculture, with a focus on plant toxicity concerns and risks to human health. Zinc (Zn) belongs to the micronutrients with poor bioavailability, though this element is essential for the vital functions of plants. In this respect, this research estimated the impact of the size of zinc oxide NPs (ZnO NPs) applied by foliar application on biomass production and nutritional qualities in baby leaf Swiss chard (Beta vulgaris ssp. cicla L. cv. Barese). Plants were grown hydroponically in controlled environment growth chambers, and exposed via foliar spray to varying particle sizes of ZnO NPs (18, 35–45, and 80–200 nm) at a concentration of 200 ppm. Control plants were sprayed with distilled water. The results revealed that ZnO NPs improved fresh and dry biomass, leaf area, favored leaf chlorophyll and flavonol indexes, and improved the total soluble protein content in Swiss chard. The total phenolic content and antioxidant properties depended more on different sizes of ZnO NPs in the solutions used for spraying plants. ZnO NPs significantly increased the accumulation of Zn and Fe in edible tissues. Still, the hazard quotient values of Zn and Fe were lower than 1, which supports the safe consumption of Swiss chard after ZnO NP treatment. In conclusion, these results revealed that ZnO NPs could be applied in Swiss chard production to improve yield, quality, and nutraceutical properties. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sprouts, Microgreens, and Baby Leaf Vegetables)
Show Figures

Graphical abstract

14 pages, 2374 KiB  
Article
Photon Distribution of Sole-Source Lighting Affects the Mineral Nutrient Content of Microgreens
by Viktorija Vaštakaitė-Kairienė, Aušra Brazaitytė, Jurga Miliauskienė, Rūta Sutulienė, Kristina Laužikė, Akvilė Viršilė, Giedrė Samuolienė and Erik S. Runkle
Agriculture 2022, 12(8), 1086; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture12081086 - 23 Jul 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1809
Abstract
In the study, we cultivated basil, beet, and mustard microgreens under different lighting treatments from light-emitting diodes (LEDs) and evaluated the contents of mineral nutrients. Microgreens grew under blue 447, red 638 and 665, far-red 731 nm LEDs, or the same spectrum but [...] Read more.
In the study, we cultivated basil, beet, and mustard microgreens under different lighting treatments from light-emitting diodes (LEDs) and evaluated the contents of mineral nutrients. Microgreens grew under blue 447, red 638 and 665, far-red 731 nm LEDs, or the same spectrum but with partial substitution of 638 nm red with green 520 (BRG), yellow 595 (BRY), or orange 622 nm (BRO) LEDs (16 h photoperiod; total photon flux density of 300 μmol m −2 s −1). BRG, BRY, or BRO lighting had distinct effects on mineral contents among the microgreen species. BRG increased the content of mineral nutrients, especially in mustard and beet. In all microgreens, Ca and P were associated with BRG; in beet and mustard, Zn and Mg were associated with BRG; in basil, Zn was associated with BRY and Mg with BRO treatments. A broader photon spectrum increased Fe (up to 2.9–fold), K:Ca, P:Mg, and P:Zn in basil, and Fe:Zn in microgreens. We conclude that the partial replacement of red with green light was the most effective at enhancing the mineral nutrient content of microgreens, although responses varied among the crops studied. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sprouts, Microgreens, and Baby Leaf Vegetables)
Show Figures

Figure 1

10 pages, 2326 KiB  
Communication
The Biometric Parameters of Microgreen Crops Grown under Various Light Conditions
by Barbara Frąszczak and Monika Kula-Maximenko
Agriculture 2022, 12(5), 576; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture12050576 - 20 Apr 2022
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 2410
Abstract
Microgreens are becoming increasingly popular both as horticultural crops and as vegetables consumed by humans. They are classified as foods of high nutritional value. Twenty-eight microgreens crops were grown in a growth chamber under fully controlled conditions in order to determine how different [...] Read more.
Microgreens are becoming increasingly popular both as horticultural crops and as vegetables consumed by humans. They are classified as foods of high nutritional value. Twenty-eight microgreens crops were grown in a growth chamber under fully controlled conditions in order to determine how different light treatments affected their growth rate. The plants were grown under three light sources emitting red/blue ratios of about 6.7, 0.6, and 1.6 units (Red light, Blue light, and R + B light, respectively). Apart from that, the spectrum contained 10% yellow and orange light and 10% green light. The fresh weight of the plants ranged from 8 (perilla) to 1052 mg (nasturtium), whereas the length ranged for the same plants from 2.0 to 26.2 cm. The nasturtium was particularly strongly distinguished from the other species by the high values of its biometric parameters. The fresh mass of most of the other microgreens ranged from 20 to 100 mg, whereas their height ranged from 5 to 8 cm. Red light caused a significant increase in the fresh and dry weights of more than half of the species. The light spectrum had a lesser influence on the length of the plants. The research results showed considerable differences in the dynamics of growth of commonly cultivated microgreens. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sprouts, Microgreens, and Baby Leaf Vegetables)
Show Figures

Figure 1

11 pages, 1634 KiB  
Article
The Changes in GABA, GAD and DAO Activities, and Microbial Safety of Soaking- and High Voltage Electric Field-Treated Adzuki Bean Sprouts
by Kai-Ying Chiu
Agriculture 2022, 12(4), 469; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture12040469 - 25 Mar 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2242
Abstract
The level of γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) in nongerminated adzuki bean seeds is low, but it increases substantially during germination and sprouting. In this study, three seed treatments, including soaking (S), high voltage electric field (HVEF), and soaking plus HVEF (SHVEF), were used to [...] Read more.
The level of γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) in nongerminated adzuki bean seeds is low, but it increases substantially during germination and sprouting. In this study, three seed treatments, including soaking (S), high voltage electric field (HVEF), and soaking plus HVEF (SHVEF), were used to examine their effects on sprout growth, sprout GABA content, sprout glutamate decarboxylase (GAD), and diamine oxidase (DAO) activities and microbial loads on 6-day-old adzuki bean sprouts. All the treatments enhanced sprout growth, increased sprout’s GABA, and increased sprouts’ GAD and DAO activities. The examined seed treatments also significantly reduced the microbial loads of the produced 6-day-old adzuki bean sprouts. The most effective treatment that improved the morphological and biochemical traits and reduced microbial loads on produced sprouts was the SHVEF treatment. SHVEF treatment also achieved a 5-log reduction in the microbial loads of total aerobic bacterial counts, total coliform counts, and total mold counts on the produced adzuki bean sprouts. Therefore, SHVEF is effective for increasing adzuki bean sprout production. It can also be used to improve nutritional quality and provide an intervention technique against microbial contamination on produced sprouts. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sprouts, Microgreens, and Baby Leaf Vegetables)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Back to TopTop