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Plant your different lettuce in hanging baskets. It's easy to care for, easy to harvest, and easy to move in or out of sun. You can raise all your salad greens hanging on the patio.
By john from Mansfield, AR
Plant 4 or 5 different varieties of lettuce in your lettuce bed then you can have a variety of greens to eat. When cutting you lettuce off, just break off the leaves and leave the roots growing. It will produce more lettuce for you to eat. If the lettuce has dead leaves on it, just snip them off and it will grow again. Keep your lettuce watered if the weather is dry.
Summer: Obviously the widest range of salad greens can be grown in summer, providing you protect them from summer heat and make sure they stay evenly watered. Some greens are mild, others are strong and bitter, so grow a mixture for a blend of flavors.
Winter: Greens sown in late summer should be ready to harvest in early winter. With a little protection, gardeners in milder climates can continue to sow and grow salads all winter long. Gardeners living in harsh climates can continue to grow salad greens indoors in shallow flats near a south-facing window.
Successional Sowing: A new batch of seed sown every 2-3 weeks will ensure a continuous crop of greens for harvesting. Plant greens in full sun early and late in the season when the weather is cool. Plant them in light to partial shade during the heat of the summer.
Interplanting and Catch Cropping: Greens grow quickly. Plant them in between rows or around slow-growing crops like such as cabbages, potatoes, and cucumbers. Your salad greens will mature and be ready for harvesting well before the larger crops fill in the space.
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I planted some leaf lettuce in my garden and it is doing pretty good. My question is how do I harvest the lettuce and what can I use to take away some of the bitter taste? I've tried it straight from the garden and it tastes kind of bitter.
If it is bitter, you waited too long to harvest it. You could try sautéing it on a bit of olive oil and adding salt and pepper.
I got some loose leaf lettuce from my neighbor and also found it to be a little bitter but not too bad. I tossed it with some Olive Garden Signature Italian dressing and topped it with some drained mandarin oranges. I rather enjoyed it. I wonder if hot weather has anything to do with the taste. I would think that lettuce is a cooler weather vegetable but I have never grown lettuce.
This is an interesting question as I have had some very bitter loose leaf lettuce also.
I read comments from this site and here are a couple of comments:
"Note: Although the biggest cause for bitter lettuce is temperature, along with the other possible reasons, additional factors such as one's region, current growing conditions and even variety can all play a role in the bitterness of lettuce plants.
Some people have found it helpful to soak their bitter lettuce prior to using. If you would like to give this a try, separate the lettuce leaves, put them in a bowl of cold water and add a small amount of baking soda. Let the leaves soak about five to 10 minutes, rinse thoroughly in cold water and then soak them again for a few more minutes. Drain and use. You can also try refrigerating the bitter lettuce for 24-48 hours before serving."
I have been growing lettuce for 3 months now and they have been doing really well. All the lettuce plants, because they were planted at the same time, are starting to flower. Can I plant these again and how do I do it? I am not sure of the variety of lettuce, I think it is a mignonette.
By Therese H
Sure you can. Make sure the plant is completely dry before picking the seeds. We just leave ours in the garden over the winter, and in the spring, many little seedlings appear weeks before we till and plant. We have three varieties, and they all do it. I'm in Zone 4-5, if this helps. We sometimes transplant them into rows and have lettuce for weeks.
Last summer I grew lettuces that produce very bitter tasting leaves. We are unable to eat them! I am guessing it is a result of soil preparation. I have replaced the soil and used two different beds; but alas again this summer I have the same problem.
By Marcia from Canberra, Australia
Lettuce is a cool weather vegetable. If it gets too hot it will be bitter
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Winter sowing is a method of planting seeds in milk jugs and letting them sit out all winter. My lettuce did so well it was coming out of the jug and I planted it today. There is no need to harden off the plants since they have been outside all winter. Follow this link to a tip on Thriftyfun: Start Seeds Outdoors With Winter Sowing