Getting the most from your head of lettuce

Dear Ask Kitty,

I like having lettuce on my sandwiches, green salads, and even making lettuce leaf wraps. I don’t like paying three to four dollars for one head of lettuce that gets rusty and gooey by the second day. Can I grow my own head lettuce in the house right now?

Thank you, a lettuce lover


Dear Lettuce Lover,

I like your lettuce as a wrap idea! You can definitely grow your own head lettuce. It takes a long time to grow a head of lettuce, but you can much more easily grow some lovely leaf lettuce quicker.

An eight-inch pot holds one gallon of soil and can support the growing of one head of lettuce. Instead in that same eight-inch pot you could grow four or five leaf lettuce plants in half the time. The best part is if you gently harvest your lettuce leaves your plant will produce more leaves.

You can do this many times!

To begin, choose a container that will hold a gallon of soil. It will need to have drainage holes so I recommend putting a plate or tray under the pot you choose.

Ordinary soil that is from your garden may become dense and compact after a few waterings, this will hinder your lettuce from growing so you will need to add some compost. Plant your seeds 1/8 to 1/4 inch deep with four to five seeds per pot. The seeds will germinate in four to seven days. Be sure and put the pot in a sunny window and a place free from cold drafts.

Reseed every three weeks to keep your lettuce plentiful. Remove plants as they produce less leaves after five to six pickings.

When watering your lettuce remember to not over water. Water your lettuce when the top inch of the soil is dry. Feed your lettuce every two weeks with a simple manure or compost tea. A store bought organic plant food can also be used. I would love to hear how your lettuce does and maybe we could meet up for a lettuce wrap lunch!

Happy lettucing, Kitty

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