Growing Lettuce from Seed

An unimposing group of leafy plants that originated from the bitter leaved wild lettuce. Lettuce is the essential base for any successful salad, as well as the garnish of choice for sandwiches and many other dishes.

Culture: While lettuce is fairly adaptable, it will make its best growth on organic, well-drained soils in sunny locations. Since lettuce is a cool weather crop, sow your seed as soon as the soil can be worked in the spring, then every two weeks thereafter to ensure a continuous supply. Sow seed about 3 mm (1/8″) deep in rows 45 cm (18″) apart. Lettuce can also be sown in blocks or squares as opposed to rows. Thin heading lettuce to 30 cm (12″) spacing.

An even supply of moisture during the entire growth period is imperative for success. Harvest leaf lettuce by either pulling the entire plant or by cutting leaves from the main stem at least 2.5 cm (1″) above the base. This harvesting process will allow the plant to sprout new leaves.

Harvest head lettuce by cutting the head off at the base, just below the lower leaves. Once lettuce bolts (starts to produce a rapidly growing flower stem), the leaves will become bitter.