The sharp part is a key, a good, clean cut allows the crop to regrow quickly from less stress. Loose leaf lettuce is considered more of a cool weather crop. The hot summer sun and temperatures can be hard on lettuce crops, and cause them to bolt. How to grow lettuce – harvesting lettuce Start picking baby loose-leaf lettuces at six weeks, at 10 weeks for hearting types. Lettuce (Loose Leaf) Growing Guide Crop Rotation Group Miscellaneous Soil Most soil types but best if it's moisture retentive with some dug in compost. Though they take longer to reach maturity than the loose-leaf types often do, they’re relatively quick growing. Romaine lettuces (often known as Cos lettuces in the UK) are another type of lettuce that you can sow this time of year. Red Salad Bowl : Beautiful red-leafed lettuce that adds a ton of flavor and color to salads. Cutting every other plant at the ground will give remaining plants more space for growth. Loose leaf lettuce harvest can begin anytime the leaves have formed but prior to the formation of a seed stalk. Hey everyone! Black Seeded Simpson : A crisp, leaf lettuce that handles heat well, Prize Head Leaf – Heirloom Variety with great flavor, Red Salad Bowl : Beautiful red-leafed lettuce that adds a ton of flavor and color to salads, 4 Beneficial Insects To Attract And Keep In The Garden, Sandy Greig’s New York Country Style Potager Garden. It’s a great first vegetable for kids because it grows quickly, especially if you pick a few leaves every day rather than waiting for a full head. For fall harvest of loose leaf lettuce in Nebraska, sow seeds in late July to early August. However, loose leaf lettuce can be grown during most of the season if you select varieties that are heat-tolerant. The compost will act as both a mulch and a source of fertilizer as the lettuce starts to grow. Copyright © 2020 Rural Sprout on the Seasoned Pro Theme, 10 Reasons Your Seeds Aren't Germinating and How To Fix It. Strive for a pH of 6.0 to 6.8. Quick to germinate and mature, you can harvest leaves as soon as they’re large enough and go back for more as needed. Loose-Leaf Lettuce Varieties. Or you could heat an undercover growing area in a sustainable way. And don’t forget that you can store your freshly harvested salad greens for up to two weeks with this clever little trick. Once fall begins to arrive, you can begin to sow seeds back in the sunny locations. Butterhead lettuces are also relatively easy to grow. Often, you can begin to pick the first leaves in as few as 4-6 weeks. She is a practical, hands-on gardener, with a background in philosophy: (an MA in English-Philosophy from St Andrews University). Many loose leaf varieties can be harvested in as little as 30 days after planting. Loose leaf lettuce harvest can begin anytime the leaves have formed but prior to the formation of a seed stalk. Welcome back to my channel! She has made many strides in attracting local wildlife and increasing biodiversity on the site. The best way to accomplish this is to work in plenty of organic matter (compost, rotted manure, or leaf mold) that will loosen and enrich the soil. It needs an average, well-drained soil that is kept moist and a soil temperature between 55° and 75°. Just move around containers as needed throughout the season to protect from too much heat and sun. Many are green but there are also some interesting varieties with reddish coloration. It is relatively tolerant of hot weather and can be grown for either baby leaf or full-size heads. However, though this type of lettuce is known for being good with the heat, many varietals can cope with cooler and cold temperatures too. So you can simply harvest leaves as needed, and new leaves will regrow. But they taste great too and look beautiful in any salad made with them. How To Grow Ginger Indoors – The Perfectly Delicious Winter House Plant. A good rule of thumb is to sow a new area just before it’s time to harvest the first cutting of a crop. This lettuce varietal is very easy to grow, and it can be flexibly used in a wide variety of recipes, making it a popular choice for the garden and market. 5 Amazing Garden Books That Will Help You Grow Better Than Ever! The tender curvy leaves are ideal for salads. How To Grow Sugar Snap Peas & Snow Peas – The Perfect Spring Crop! Growing lettuce can help cover and protect the soil after the main harvest of other annual crops is out of the way. Similarly to romaine, summer … Their ability to withstand warmer conditions also means that these are a great choice for areas with hot summers. But you do have to choose the right varieties. This article may contain affiliate links. Unlike loose-leaf lettuces, they have rose-petal like forms. Today's Garden Vlog is about How to Harvest Loose Leaf Lettuce! Loose leaf lettuce tends Loose-leaf lettuces are easy and fast to grow, maturing in about 50 days, and can be picked a leaf at a time. They’ll take a little longer than loose-leaf lettuces to reach a decent size for harvest, but are still reasonably quick to mature. Besides, no store could possibly stock the number of lettuce varieties available to a gardener. The rosette shape makes this a rather ornamental one. The hot summer heat tends to wilt and bolt lettuce. Loose leaf lettuce prefers cool weather. There are loose-leaf lettuces that can be grown all year round. It may be planted earlier or later in other locations, depending on your climate. Usually by the third harvest, it’s time to pull out the plants, add them to your compost bin, and start again. ). It will help you make the most of your space by keeping beds (or containers) planted up for more of the year. Or perhaps a few photos and a short story on your own garden? So you still have time to sow some and harvest before the end of the growing season. To harvest lettuce for as long as you can you’ll have to pick different varieties for each season and different cultivation methods. It can be easy to plant small lettuce seeds too thickly. Lettuce is versatile and incredibly easy to grow. How to Harvest Leaf Lettuce To grow lettuce with the “cut and come again method,” it is best to start with loose leaf varieties like mesclun in a variety of colors, flavors and textures. Line platters or bowls, layer in sandwiches for a delicious crunch and, of course, they make delicious salads. This type of lettuce takes a lot longer to reach harvestable size, and there are a number of challenges involved in growing them successfully. Lettuce won't germinate when the soil is over 80°F. In hot weather you’ll notice a difference in the succulence of your lettuces according to the time of day they’re picked. (Yes, I said grill.) These lettuces tend to be relatively crisp, often with lighter leaves on the inside and darker leaves externally. See : How To Make Great Compost. (Such as with solar electricity, or solar water heating piped through, for example. They are reasonably hardy but hold better in summer as young greens than as mature plants. Leaf lettuce is one of the easiest and most satisfying edibles to grow. The loose leaves grow from a single stalk rather than in a compact head like other types. Dont settle for those pale, limp pieces of green wilting under the salad bar glass. Unlike iceberg, butterhead, and romaine lettuce, these leafy greens and reds do not grow from a head or heart, making them an ideal low-maintenance crop. But you may have to provide additional cloche protection. Early picking can start from 30 days at baby leaf stage, cutting at 8-12cm for regrowth. Probably one of the best known varieties of butterhead lettuce, ‘Bibb’ is named after John B. Bibb, an army officer during the War of 1812. There are four basic styles of lettuce. Sow seeds directly in the garden about two to four weeks prior to the last frost of the year. So, what are you waiting for? Rather than forming hearts, these lettuces have leaves loosely arranged around a center. Plant seeds to a depth of 1/4″ to 1/2″ and cover. Heading types such as romaine, Batavian and butterhead are usually pulled up whole, but these can also be … This post may contain affiliate links. Loose leaf lettuces grow best in cooler weather, so plant in the spring, then again in the late summer for a fall harvest. Pick a spot away from active heat sources and cold drafts, and inaccessible to mischievous, hungry pets. These are the most forgiving type of lettuce, and also the ones that provide a yield the quickest, so you can eat salads from your garden sooner rather than later. You could also consider making hotbeds for your polytunnel or greenhouse, to provide heat from below. When it comes to growing loose leaf lettuce, the more fertile and fine the soil, the better. Prize Head Leaf – Heirloom Variety with great flavor The harvested lettuce will become a little less tender with each cutting. Find a location that is partial shade and cooler and has a pH level between 6.0-7.0. This cultivar group contains some of the oldest lettuce cultivars, and there are some excellent heirloom varieties are available. Loose-leaf lettuce is the easiest to grow, and there are both red and green varieties which are grown in much the same way. Although all 4 categories are tasty selections to raise, growing loose leaf lettuce is by far the most simple of all. It has a low maturity rate of about 55 days, and is very easy to grow both indoors and outdoors. When it comes to raising your own food, nothing can be more simple than growing loose leaf lettuce! Keep holes approximately 2 feet apart to allow for the most lettuce grow. For seed germination, the soil temperature is best between 50-80F (10-26C). Arugula 40 days Cutting every other plant at the ground will give remaining plants more space for growth. Black Seeded Simpson : A crisp, leaf lettuce that handles heat well But getting it right means thinking about which varieties are right for you and your area. Loose leaf lettuces are versatile. Do you have a garden tip you would like to share? Add in large amounts of compost and even a bit of sand to your planting area to help build in fertility and good drainage. The yield from the garden is increasing year on year – rapidly approaching an annual weight in produce of almost 1 ton. For other st… When do I plant lettuce? Email us today at info@thisismygarden.com and share it with our TIMG community. You can either grow them in rows to produce bundles of loose leaves, or sow them thickly in a garden You’ll be able to keep eating fresh salads even as colder weather arrives. Your chosen location must also be a safe one. per 100 sq. When it comes to growing loose leaf lettuce, the more fertile and fine the soil, the better. And with second and third cutting, they can keep a household in a steady supply of salads. I hope you enjoy my video & my garden vlog series! Lettuce grows well in cool weather so it's one of the first things we can plant in the spring. Seeds typically are sown in early spring and again later in the summer or early fall. You can also use the “Feature My Garden Tip” button at the top of the website to submit your entry. More food grown means less food bought. There are hundreds of varieties to grow, but here are some excellent, full-flavored selections to try! Originally called “limestone lettuce” it was first introduced to the market by Grenewein Greenhouse in Louisville in the 1920s. And we all know how sad store-bought produce looks come October. Lettuce 'Salad Bowl' (Loose Leaf) is a large, medium-green, slow bolting tender form that is reliable and easy-to-grow. If you are planting in pots or containers, this process is a breeze. And if you’re having trouble finding seeds this late in the season, Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds is a wonderful resource for quality seed. Position Semi-shade, a cool sunny spot or inter-planted between other crops. And lettuce is a great plant to start with if you want to ease into year-round growing. Despite the wide variety of lettuces available, most are not grown commercially in quantity. Easy – I’ve got for excellent reasons why you should add lettuce to your fall garden: Even in cold winter areas, you can grow lettuce through the colder months if you give your plants some protection. They are great for adaptability. Leaf lettuce can be cut as soon as it is large enough to use, usually in 50 to 60 days from planting. How to Grow & Growing Tips for Looseleaf Lettuce Fertilizer is best applied as a pre-plant at a rate of 3 lbs. (Especially if you have some protection in place in case of early frosts.). These are the most forgiving type of lettuce, and also the ones that provide a yield the quickest, so you can eat salads from your garden sooner rather than later. While potentially somewhat more challenging to grow than loose-leaf lettuces, and butterhead, romaine types are still pretty easy to grow in most temperate climate gardens. on Creating A Classic DIY Garden Bench For Your Home & Garden – With 2 x 4’s! Loose-leaf lettuce comes in a huge variety of tastes, textures, colors and forms. Learn about the types of lettuce you can buy to perk up salads, make great wraps or char on the grill. Apart from being easy to grow, it’s also not head-forming, so there’s less to worry about. Being so compact, it’s extremely popular for small spaces, like container and window box gardens. This list of 18 Types of Lettuce will help you in selecting the best lettuce varieties you should grow in your garden or containers. In 2014, she and her husband moved to their forever home in the country. She has long had an interest in ecology, gardening and sustainability and is fascinated by how thought can generate action, and ideas can generate positive change. If planting in containers, be sure to allow for good drainage. Tom Thumb is a type of Butterhead lettuce, which has a characteristic round shape and pliant leaves. Lettuce is one of the easiest crops for any gardener to grow. Cheryl’s Garden – A Gorgeous Mix of Flowers, Vegetables and Containers. Crisphead (Iceberg), Butterhead (Bibb), Romaine, and the star for today’s article, Loose Leaf Lettuce. Seeds for loose leaf styles are extremely small, and the loose soil allows seed to germinate easily. She has filled the rest of the garden with a polytunnel, a vegetable patch, a herb garden, a wildlife pond, woodland areas and more. With leaf lettuce, sowing seed is a simple process. This type of lettuce is characterized by a tight and upright shape. Which type of lettuce you choose to grow will depend not only on where you live. If you live in a colder climate zone, you can still grow lettuce year-round. Pine or rough course hardwood bark mulch is an excellent lightweight choice to put in the bottom of containers to allow for excellent drainage. Leaf lettuce comes in red, green and oakleaf. If planting in containers, be sure to allow for good drainage. The green, triangular leaves grow on thick, solid plants and have a pleasantly sharp flavor. on How To Grow Sugar Snap Peas & Snow Peas – The Perfect Spring Crop! It can be grown almost anywhere, from a traditional garden setting, to raised rows, raised beds, containers, and even in hanging baskets and patio planters. Sow seeds every few weeks to keep an everlasting crop coming on all year. Where I live, (zone 8B) I don’t just grow lettuce from spring through fall – I also have lettuces that grow in my unheated polytunnel all winter. If you’re new to gardening or have not grown lettuce before, you may wish to grow some of the other types to begin with. Loose-leaf lettuces, as the name suggests, don’t form tight heads. In addition to designing gardens, Elizabeth also works in a consultancy capacity, offering ongoing support and training for gardeners and growers around the globe. You can measure soil temperature with this soil thermomete r gauge. Sometimes, this type will form heads at their core, but these are generally softer and less crisp than the other two types described below. Pick loose-leaf lettuce from the outside, letting the inner leaves continue to grow. Ideal Growing Conditions for Lettuce Lettuce is a cool-weather vegetable and best grown during spring and fall when temperatures are between 60-70F (15-21C). Snip leaves about 1/2″ above the soil line at each harvest with a sharp pair of scissors or shears. Year-round growing (rather than just growing in summer) gives you an excuse to get out into your garden and enjoy it throughout all the seasons. Elizabeth Waddington is a writer, permaculture designer and green living consultant. Read on to learn a little more about each of these four types of lettuce, and for some of the best varieties of each type to sow in summer for fall (or winter) harvests. Before we delve deeper and look at some of the delicious varieties of lettuce you can sow now for fall, it’s helpful to discuss the different types of lettuce. Since lettuce is best freshly picked, it does not travel or store well. She graduated from allotment gardening to organically managing 1/3 of an acre of land, including a mature fruit orchard,which she has turned into a productive forest garden. Dig 1/8 inch holes with the tip of your finger or a pencil. Creating A Classic DIY Garden Bench For Your Home & Garden – With 2 x 4’s! Of course, the twenty lettuce varieties mentioned in this article are just a small portion of the many different options out there that you should consider. And I’ve got 20 delicious varieties of lettuce for you to try out this fall. Summer Crisp/Batavia: As the name implies, summer crisp is the ideal choice for summer lettuce. Those dense, spherical lettuces you may be used to buying in a store are commonly referred to as crisphead or iceberg lettuces. The full heads are heavy and compact. Loose-leaf lettuces are definitely the easiest crops to grow if you’re a novice gardener. Growing Loose Leaf Lettuce Lettuce is a cool-season vegetable. By harvesting leaf lettuce through trimming it a few inches above the In fact, with a cold frame, it can even grow through the harshest of winter months as well. Visit her website here and follow along on her Facebook page here. Height 6in (15cm), spread to 10in (25cm). They’re best cut as individual leaves and are great for salads and making wilted lettuce. This loose-leaf lettuce variety has been a favorite for years because of its heavy production and dependability. It a great quick crop before a. You will have your favourites as we have ours, all we can do is point out the merits of particular varieties of butterhead lettuces and leave the choice up to you. You can also extend your growing season for fall plants by using other interesting techniques – such as incorporating more thermal mass to store heat energy. First of all, you might be wondering why you should keep sowing lettuce (or even sow it for the first time) this late in the year. Or you could integrate an undercover growing area with a chicken coop, for example, so the coop/chickens help heat the space. Loose-leaf lettuces, as the name suggests, don’t form tight heads. There are so many varieties out there, as well as varieties specific to just about any climate, meaning that lettuce can basically be grown anywhere, anytime. Colorful loose-leaf lettuce varieties like mesclun, endive, or arugula can make a quick, simple addition to your garden bed. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Loose leaf lettuce cover such a huge spectrum of colours, shapes, tastes and texture that it is almost impossible to recommend specific varieties. Up until around August, you can still sow a wide range of lettuces. Pine or rough course hardwood bark mulch is an excellent lightweigh… ft. An ideal ratio of fertilizer would be 1-2-2 formulation (5-10-10). They always have an incredible selection of lettuce seeds of all types. Not only is it simple to grow, it can keep fresh salads on the dinner table from early spring to late fall. Cultivated for more than 2,000 years, lettuce (Lactuca sativa) has long been a dietary staple in cuisines across the globe. She has created booklets and aided in the design of Food Kits to help gardeners to cool and warm climates to grow their own food, for example. It will also depend on your personal preferences, and of course on the time of year. This way, you always have a supply of fresh greens coming on as the first crop begins to fade from the third cutting. Loose Leaf If you’re planning to grow lettuce at home for the first time, loose leaf is the best type to get started with. The more protection you provide, the longer the list of options will become. Loose-leaf lettuces are tender and delicate in flavour. She is undertaking ongoing work for NGO Somalia Dryland Solutions and a number of other non governmental organisations, and works as an environmental consultant for several sustainable companies. Since moving to the property she has also rescued many chickens from factory farms, keeping them for their eggs, and moved much closer to self-sufficiency. So there’s still plenty of time to get sowing to make sure you have plenty to eat in your garden after summer has gone. Some grow quickly and produce a crop for the fall even without the need for any special winter protection. Maintain a pH level between 5.7 and 6.5, and add lime to your garden to provide much … Let’s take a look together, and explore the why’s and how’s of growing lettuce in the fall. There are numerous different types of lettuce with loose leaves, with basic red and green being the most common. If you’re growing your lettuce undercover from the start, these lettuces can be a good choice, because they can cope with higher temperatures than other types. Seeds for loose leaf styles are extremely small, and the loose soil allows seed to germinate easily. Loose leaf lettuceis a lettuce variety that does not form a compact head. Please do … You can grow leaf lettuce in rows for nice bundles of loose leaf lettuce, or you can sow it thickly in a garden bed or container for harvest as young, tender lettuce. When she is not gardening, Elizabeth spends a lot of time working remotely on permaculture garden projects around the world. Salad season is far from over. Check out How to Grow Cut-and-Come-Again Lettuce for more detailed growing advice for this type of lettuce. They’re best in the early morning, before the leaves dehydrate in … If you like a particularly tight and crisp lettuce then these are a type of lettuce you will enjoy. Add in large amounts of compost and even a bit of sand to your planting area to help build in fertility and good drainage. Of course, you could also simply grow lettuce indoors, or in containers that can be brought indoors before the first frosts. As the summer heat turns up, plant in an area of the garden or patio that receives more shade. For best results, apply a 1/8″ to a 1/4″ of compost directly on top after planting. Once seeded, it is a fast path from sprout to harvest. Amongst other things, she has designed private gardens in regions as diverse as Canada, Minnesota, Texas, the Arizona/California desert, and the Dominican Republic, commercial aquaponics schemes, food forests and community gardens in a wide range of global locations. Lightly sprinkle 4-5 lettuce seeds in each spot. Leaf lettuce can be harvested when plants reach 2 to 4″ high. As with loose-leaf varieties, there are plenty of butterhead lettuces you can sow all year round. If you’re a fan of this crispy salad green, then you must know about various types of lettuce so that you can select the best lettuce varieties for your garden. Some are great for hot summer weather, and others are great at withstanding the cold. Others are hardy enough to survive with some kind of protection even once the first frosts arrive. And as anyone who’s bought those clamshells of baby lettuce greens at the store can tell you – homegrown is the way to go. Loose-leaf lettuces are definitely the easiest crops to grow if you’re a novice gardener. Of containers to allow for the fall even without the need for any gardener to grow it. The first leaves in as little as 30 days after planting are green there! Sowing seed is a type of lettuce you will enjoy summer … Find location. Leaves externally always best loose leaf lettuce to grow a supply of fresh greens coming on as the name suggests, don ’ forget. 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