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Five On Your Side Checks Out The Chia Phenomenon

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RALEIGH, N.C. — According to the TV commercial, all you have to do is soak your Chia overnight, spread the seeds, keep it watered and watch it grow. But is it really that easy? To find out, Five On Your Side bought a $13 Chia Head and a $15 Chia Herb garden.

Five On Your Side started with the Chia Head. Following directions, Five On Your Side soaked it overnight along with the seeds. The seeds turn into kind of a paste. Five On Your Side spread the paste all over the Chia Head, and then filled it up with water.

The Chia Herb Garden comes with four little terra cotta pots, six packages of herb seeds to choose from and four "growing sponges," which are the key. Five On Your Side soaked the sponges for a couple of minutes, squeezed out the extra water then put them in the pots.

Five On Your Side chose to grow chives, cilantro, parsley and basil. All of the herb seeds except the chives were sprinkled on top of the sponges. The instructions said to plant the chives inside the sponge.

Next, Five On Your Side placed the sponges near a window and covered them with plastic bags to create humidity and waited for them to grow.

Five On Your Side took comprehensive notes to monitor the progress. The basil sprouted in just two days. The chives took four days and both the cilantro and parsley took a week.

After two weeks of herb growth, the herbs have a way to go before reaching the picture on the box, but each germinated within the promised time. After 12 days, the Chia Head was growing well, but not quite as full-headed as the picture on the box.

With the Chia Herb Garden, you also get a instruction booklet that is incredibly thorough and also has recipes for your herbs.