Professional Microgreens Grow Rack - Step by Step Build Guide
Updated: Jan 3
Want to set-up a Professional Grow Rack that can grow some epic Microgreens?
In this guide, we will show you, step-by-step, how easy it is to build and use a long-lasting, MASSIVE veggie producing rack. (You can also grow edible flowers, and many other crops with it!)
We also have a YouTube video guide (click here) that you can follow along with as well in case things get confusing!
Be sure to check out our other blogs (Click here) where we talk about How To Grow Microgreens, How To Sanitize & Clean Trays and What to do with your Grow Medium after Harvesting.
Supplies You Need For This EPIC Build:
Here is a list of items that you will need to get started with your professional Microgreen grow rack --> Click Each Item for a direct link to them:
Setting up the rack:
Your first job will be to get the shelf legs assembled. Notice the hollow, threaded space in the body of your shelf legs? These holes are where you can screw in the wheels for your Microgreen grow rack. We love using the wheels because it makes it easier to move the rack around if we want to rearrange them or clean any debris under them.
Once you have attached wheels to the legs of your rack, you will need to use the black connector pieces to secure the shelf in place. Do this by making sure that the side that says "top" is pointing the correct way. Match the two pieces around the shelf leg at the height you want to start your shelf. You will hear a snapping sound which will tell you that the connector is snug in its place. Make sure that the height at which you add the connectors is the same for all the shelf legs. Lay down all your shelf legs to compare and make sure that every connector is in its correct and matching location.
Take a shelf leg and slide it through the shelf stopper until the shelf tray reaches the connector. Do this for all four of your shelf legs until the first shelf has been set in its place.
Next, take your rubber mallet and tap your shelf evenly to make sure that it has firmly been lodged into its place. Be careful not to put too much pressure to avoid disrupting the orientation of your shelf! Your bottom shelf should be ready now!
With your lowest shelf rack in place, you will have to repeat the process of adding the connectors and shelves onto the legs. To make sure you are putting the connecting pieces in the correct place, you can count the rings on the legs. This helps us to know that all the pieces are even and the shelf will be balanced.
Once you get your first two or three shelves on, you will have to add the other half of the rack's legs.
To do this, use the top-end connectors that came with your shelf's legs and fasten them at the threaded insert. After that, you can screw on the other half of the legs.
If you can, have another person to help you lift the next shelf and slide it onto the legs. The distance between the bottom shelf and the one above it should be approximately 9.5 - 12 inches. Make sure your connectors are all balanced and in place before sliding on the shelf.
We like to add two extra shelves to our racks, so that we get more grow space per sq. foot. To do this, we have to put our lights closer to our plants. This is why our shelves around 9-10 inch spacing compared the the industry standard of 12 inches. By having narrower shelf heights, we are slightly limited on growing taller or more mature crops... Peas grow great in this spacing, but can quickly touch the lights if left growing for too long.
You can choose a shelf height according to your preference or need. We've had setups where we had 3-shelves that had 10inch spacing and 2-shelves that had 14 inch spacing. You can also add the extra shelves at a later date if you want or need to expand!
Keep repeating the process of the shelves till you get to your desired number of growing spaces. Don’t forget to use your rubber mallet to tap your shelves to make sure that they have settled well in your Microgreen grow rack and always double check that your shelves spacing is even to avoid a lopsided shelf!
Installing the Fans:
You want to add fans to your professional Microgreen grow rack to help prevent what's called "Micro-Climates" caused by the heat from the lights. This will also help you prevent issues with mold and overall, plants like good air circulation. Be sure to position the fans in the middle of your shelf on every shelf as this will help ventilate air by creating a vortex.
The fans we use, requires you to remove the anti-vibration rubber knobs from all four top corners of the fan using a screwdriver. This way you can pass a zip-tie through the fan to secure it to the shelf.
To secure it we use a zip tie and slide it through the holes of the fan and loop it over the edge of the shelf. Repeat this for the top two holes of your fan to secure it firmly in its place. (remember we have a video if you need help!)
Loop around the wires of your fans such that the USB end faces towards your power source. Leave the fan intensity controller on the side where it is easily accessible. Tie your wire loops using a zip tie to keep cables from jumbling. Cable management is important y'all!
Connect all the fans from top to bottom using their USB connections so that it forms a series circuit. This is commonly referred to as "Daisy-Chaining". When you turn on the power source, all of the fans should work together. If a fan doesn’t operate correctly, check its power connection.
Tip- We like to keep our fans power on the "high" setting.
It is recommended that you use an extension with USB sockets so you can plug in your fan's while also making it look clean. Use your zip ties to hold and tie your extension cord to the top of your Microgreen grow rack build so that it is not vulnerable to water damage. Clip off the excess zip tie ends and always double check that your extension cord is long enough to reach the outlet that you plan on running it to.
Attaching The Lights:
Using power cords with triangular connectors that come with the lights, plug in your 20-watt lights such that they are held firmly at the roof of each shelf without any zip ties. We do this by sliding the connectors through the triangular frame of the shelves. This way the lights will stand up by themselves... Do this for both ends of your light on either side of your shelf.