Before we know how to grow lentils we must know about the biology of it. This is important on deciding the conditions that are favourable for the growth of lentils. It is very much similar to that of the beans in most of the characters since both belong to the same family of legumes. Legumes are have high proteins content and are preferred by many people all over the world for its nutrient content.
Appearance and nutrient content of lentils:
The lentils are plants that grow throughout the year with the suitable conditions provided. They have seeds that are in the shape of the lens. These seeds grow in pods which remains a characteristic of the legumes. They also have a rich supply of iron which is very important in the formation of the haemoglobin. As a major characteristic of the family, it also has high contents of protein in it making an important meal. The advantage that one has with growing the lentils is that since the plant grows round the year, once the proper conditions are known anyone can grow it in their house for their domestic uses. The conditions also include proper temperature, climatic conditions, and also the nature of the soil.
Things needed for growing lentils:
The most important thing that will be very useful in this process is a pH tester that helps one determine the pH of the soil in which the lentils are desired to be grown. The pH is a very important property one has to keep in mind before planting any plant. The range for every plant differs widely and hence the range for the lentils must be known beforehand. In order to make the soil lose and easy to dig, a garden spade may also be used.
With the help of the pH tester, the pH of the soil is measured. It is preferred to be between 6 and 8. This gives a neutral growing condition for the lentils. Once the soil is known to be fit, decide the location based on the drain system. It is good if there is a slope so that the draining is effective. The apt period to sow the seedlings is in beginning of the spring. This can be done by using the spade. It is necessary the soil is moist when the seeds are planted. The temperature is also an important factor here, since warm conditions always stimulate more growth than cold conditions. It must be made sure that the soil is slightly warm and moist. The seedlings that are used for plantings must be planted in such a way that it is about one inch below the soil. The soil should not be wet but one moist. If the soil and the location is properly drained, they can be planted little deeper also. One must observe a growth periodically. It generally grows to about two and a half feet. It also produces pods that contain 2 seeds. The advantage of the lentils is that they have slight tolerance to the drought and hence can survive a period without water. But during the growing season it requires rain not less than six inches.