Salads : Lettuce ============================

By pjain      Published July 3, 2019, 7:13 a.m. in blog Gardening   

Growing Fresh lettuce

Enjoy Fresh Lettuce by Growing it Yourself

You can't beat the flavour and crispness of a freshly grown lettuce.

It is hard to get that fresh taste from commercial grown lettuce which have deteriorated quality.

  1. They have their roots cut so they immediately begin to loose moisture and therefore crispness from its leaves.
  2. They are placed into an enormous vacuum cooler to remove the field heat from the lettuce and later are placed in a refrigerated cool transportation chain until they reach the store.

Lettuce Varieties

Burpee Lettuce Crisphead Iceberg A Seed Burpee Model # 66217 HD Store SKU # 290757 $1 PRODUCT OVERVIEW The Burpee Lettuce Crisphead Iceberg A Seed can be used to grow crisp, firm heads of lettuce that can be enjoyed in salads. The mature vegetable has compact, medium-sized heads with light-green, fringed, heavily savoyed outer leaves.

Crisp and firm lettuce can be used for salads
Designed to grow in sunny areas
Approximate 10 - 21 day germination period
Can be harvested after approximately 6 weeks
Plant 8 in. apart
Can grow up to 12 in.
Compact, medium-sized heads have light green, fringed and heavily savoyed outer leaves
Heart leaves blanch silvery white
Grows best in cool weather

Ferry-Morse Lettuce Grand Rapids Seed
Model # 8118 HD $1 Store SKU # 896108 You can grow fresh, delicious lettuce with the Lettuce Grand Rapids Seed. The tipburn-resistant seed can germinate in about 10 days after it is sown. The leafy vegetable can be ready to harvest after approximately 6 weeks.

Designed to grow in sunny areas
Approximate 10 day germination time
Can be harvested after approximately 6 weeks
Plant 6 in. apart
Can grow up to 15 in.
Tipburn resistant
Lettuce is a heart-healthy food
Use in salads and other dishes

Ferry-Morse Lettuce Parris Island Seed
Model # 8119 HD $1 Store SKU # 896207 The Lettuce Parris Island Seed can be used to grow Romaine lettuce. This lettuce is heart healthy and can be used in salads. It takes approximately 10 weeks for this lettuce to be ready for harvesting.

Designed to grow in sunny areas
Approximate 10 day germination time
Can be harvested after approximately 10 weeks
Plant 8 in. apart
Can grow up to 9 in.
Parris Island lettuce is also known as Romaine lettuce
Can be used in salads

Ferry-Morse Lettuce Black-Seeded Simpson Seed
Burpee Model # 8117 HD Store SKU # 895976 $1 The Lettuce Black-Seeded Simpson Seed should be sown in a sunny area and spaced about 6 in. apart. The lettuce should be ready to harvest after approximately 6 weeks.

Designed to grow in sunny areas
Approximate 10 day germination time
Can be harvested after approximately 6 weeks
Plant 6 in. apart
Can grow up to 15 in.
Can be used for salads and other dishes

Starting Out

Depending on the variety it can take any time between 6 and 14 weeks from sowings to become ready for harvest, so if you are growing from packet seeds - always read the label.

Starting indoors in seed trays

Sow your lettuce seed indoors. They will grow quickly, so you may wish to skip sowing them into seed trays and plant them directly into small pots or compartmentalized packs that can be transplanted outdoors easily.

Fill your tray or container with good quality seed potting mix to within a half-inch of the rim, tapping them on the side to help settle the mix. Top up as necessary.

Place a few seeds into each one, then give a light covering of compost, firming it down gently over the seeds.

  • If you are using a seed tray then give a light and even sprinkling of seeds across the whole tray at approximately 5 seeds per square inch. Once done, give a light covering of compost and water in. Label with the variety and date of sowing

  • Leave in a bright, warm room, out of direct sunlight. The more light they can receive the better germination you will get. Once the seedlings reach about 2 inches in height, thin out and discard any that look weak. Those in the seed tray can be pricked out and potted on into a standard potting mix. Those already in pots can be hardened off in preparation for moving outside.

  • If available, place in into a covered propagator making sure the vents are fully open. Otherwise a bright sunlit window sill will do just fine.

  • Avoid transplating more than once by using containers that are large enough for the young plants to reach garden size without the need for potting on.

HARDENING

  • HARDENING GREENHOUSE PLANTS (colder climes). If your seedlings were grown under glass then they will also need to harden off before going outdoors. Place them into a cold-frame but keep the lid closed for a couple of weeks. Afterwards the lid can be opened on dry frost free days but remember to shut it again at night. After a further week or so, or when frosts are no longer expected, leave the lid open day and night for a week before planting outside.

  • HARDENING Indoor started plants. To harden off seedlings that have been grown indoors in a heated room, moved them to a bright unheated room, leaving them there for a couple of weeks before either putting them into a cold frame, or for leaving them outside during the day. Never leave them out over night, and keep them in if there are strong cold winds of if temperatures drop below 6 degree Celsius. Keep this up for a week and if there is no immediate threat of further frosts they can be planted outside.

SOWING OUTDOORS

Depending on the variety it can take any time between 6 and 14 weeks from sowings to become ready for harvest, so if you are growing from packet seeds - always read the label.

Lettuce plants require a free draining, humus rich soil that will hold plenty of moisture in the summer. To prevent the common physiological disorder of 'Tip burn' that can be experienced with some soils, you may wish to add lime before planting.

In preparation to sowing, dig over the soil and add plenty of compost (such as leaf mould or well rotted manure) during the autumn or early winter. Then a week or so before sowing your lettuce seeds, rake the soil over to produce a fine tilth.

You can apply a general fertiliser at this time.

Once the seedlings get to about 2 inches high they can be thinned out to leave a gap of about 6 to 12 inches between each plant- depending on the overall size of the variety grown. If you are planning on transplanting seedlings grown indoors into open ground then this is an ideal time to do this.

Getting Mulitple Crops

Early Spring Lettuce Full Sun ok

When sowing spring lettuce seeds directly outside, wait until the worst of the frosts are over. Choose a sunny site but by sowing this early you may need to give them the protection of a small poly-tunnel.

Your early seeded plants should be fine for full sun afterwards.

Main or Late summer put in shade

However, later lettuce should be protected so plant your summer harvest in a lightly shaded site as lettuce plants like plenty of light they do not like extremes of heat as this can also result in 'Tip burn'.

  • Planting Later Summer directly in seed beds, sow the seeds very thinly in ½ inch deep drills but leave about 6 inches between each row.

  • If you are sowing them directly into the open ground then leave between 10 and 12 inches between rows.

Plant every week to get rotating fresh crops

To avoid having a glut of lettuce and to ensure that crops are regularly coming into harvest, make successive, smaller sowings of lettuce seeds, at 1 or 2 week intervals depending on how much you intend on using.


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