How Do You Plant Cress?

Written by: Lars Nyman

Growing Cress

Growing Cress

Grow your own cress at home with our detailed guide on 'How Do You Plant Cress?'. Harvest fresh greens all year round by learning the essentials on how to plant cress. Whether you're an experienced gardener or a beginner, these straightforward steps will help you produce a healthy, productive cress plant in no time. Our article delves into everything you need to know, from choosing the right type of soil and the best lighting conditions, to ongoing cress care and harvesting techniques. So why buy store-bought greens when you can easily grow crisp, peppery cress right in your own home or garden? Continue reading for our comprehensive guide that makes growing cress a breeze!

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🌱 Cress Planting Cheatsheet 🌱

Choose the Right Soil

Opt for well-draining soil rich in organic matter.

Sow the Seeds

Sow cress seeds directly into the soil, 1/4 inch deep.

Water Regularly

Keep the soil consistently moist throughout the growing process.

Provide Ample Sunlight

Place the cress in a sunny spot to promote healthy growth.

Harvest in a Flash

Cress is ready to harvest within 10-14 days after sowing.

Enjoy Its Nutritional Prowess

Cress is rich in vitamin C, iron, and antioxidants.

Boost Your Health

Consuming cress may improve digestion and boost immunity.

Add Flavor to Dishes

Sprinkle cress on salads, sandwiches, or soups for a delightful punch.

Grow Indoors Year-Round

With artificial lighting, you can enjoy cress throughout the year.

Step 1: Prepare The Container

Cress is a very easy plant to grow and perfect for beginners. Start by selecting a shallow container with holes for drainage. A window sill or countertop is a great spot.

Step 2: Select A Soil

Next, fill the container with a soil mix that is specially formulated for edible plants. While any good quality potting soil will do, the soil should be water-retentive so it won't dry out quickly. Avoid using fresh compost or manure as cress prefers a higher pH level.

Step 3: Plant The Cress Seeds

Now it’s time to plant the cress seeds. Spread the seeds evenly in a shallow layer across the soil, and lightly cover them with the soil mix. Gently pat down the surface to ensure the seeds have good soil contact. Keep the seeds moist but not soggy.

Step 4: Place The Container In Bright Sunlight

Once the cress seeds are planted, put the container in a location that receives breakfast to midday sunlight. A windowsill is ideal. If need be, supplement the sunlight with a grow light to ensure the cress receives at least 8 hours of sunlight.

Step 5: Water Regularly And Watch For Sprouts

Every couple of days, mist the cress seeds with a spray bottle until the surface of the soil is moist. Keep it evenly moist, but avoid overwatering. In just 5 to 10 days you should see the cress begin to sprout. That means it’s time to begin thinning them out and harvesting the young leaves for salads or as a garnish. Enjoy!


1. How do I start growing cress?

To start growing cress, dampen some paper towels and place them in a shallow container. Sprinkle cress seeds evenly on the paper towels and keep them in a warm, well-lit location.

2. How often should I water cress?

Water your cress daily by misting the paper towels. Ensure they remain moist but not soggy.

3. How long does it take for cress to grow?

Typically, cress will start to germinate within 1-2 days and can be harvested in approximately 7-10 days.

4. Can I grow cress indoors?

Yes, cress can be grown indoors in containers using the paper towel method. Ensure it receives sufficient sunlight or use grow lights.

5. How can I harvest cress?

Harvest cress by cutting the leaves just above the base with scissors or a sharp knife. You can start harvesting when the leaves are a few inches long.

6. Can I re-grow cress after harvesting?

Unfortunately, cress is an annual plant and won't regrow after being harvested. However, you can easily start a new batch by planting fresh seeds.

In conclusion, planting cress is a simple yet rewarding gardening endeavor. With its quick growth, versatility, and nutritional value, cress is a fantastic addition to any garden or even a windowsill pot. By following the steps outlined in this article, from preparing the soil, to sowing the seeds, to providing adequate water and light, you can ensure a successful cress harvest. Remember to keep in mind the timing of planting cress, as it thrives in cooler temperatures. Regularly watering your cress plants and harvesting them once they reach the desired size will promote continuous growth and a bountiful yield. Whether you choose to add these peppery leaves to salads, sandwiches, or garnishes, their fresh and vibrant flavors will undoubtedly enhance any dish. So, go ahead and start planting cress in your garden – it's a small but incredibly gratifying step towards a more self-sustainable and flavorful culinary experience, and an opportunity to reconnect with nature. Get your hands dirty and let the wonders of gardening unfold before you. Happy gardening!

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