The most common types of lettuce are head lettuce, leaf lettuce and romaine.
First, you need a garden or the space in a pot to grow your own lettuce. You can buy one from a nursery or plant seeds in the ground. Choose a location with good soil which is about 6 inches deep and keep it moist at all times. Lettuce grows best when planted after the last frost which is typically in April.
Next, prepare the soil for planting by working in compost or planting mix into the top layer of dirt until it becomes friable and soft. For every 4 inches of depth that you create in your garden bed, work in 1 gallon of fertilizer mixed with compost. Be sure to take care not to add too much nitrogen to your garden because it can cause fast, leafy growth and low quality lettuce.
Next up: plant the seeds in the soil about an inch apart and then cover them with a thin layer of soil. The ideal time to harvest your lettuce is when the leaves are 5-6 inches long for head lettuces and 4 inches long for leaf lettuce.
There are several varieties of lettuce that you can plant in your garden including Boston, bibb or butterhead, red romaines, oakleafs, crisp head types and light green leafy ones. There are also many specialty varieties which should be available at your local nursery. The seeds come in packages and can be planted in succession every week or so to ensure a continuous supply of lettuce all season long.
The best way to pick your lettuce is when the leaves begin to curl and after it has grown large enough that you can form the head for butterhead types. Your other leaf lettuces will harvest at 4 inches and you will need to harvest them when they are almost mature before they will grow larger.
Some of the most common types of lettuce that you can find at any supermarket or grocery store include: Boston, bibb and butterhead. There is also crispy leaf types that work well for salads and light green leafy varieties which you can use to make a delicious salad.
Next: Harvest your lettuce once it grows to the size you want and keep harvesting every few days. To harvest, grasp the outside leaves and cut them off at their base using a sharp knife or scissors. Repeat this process until you have harvested all of your lettuces. Once they begin to bolt (flower) in early summer, stop harvesting.
Lastly, use proper sanitation methods when you are harvesting your lettuce and keep it separate from other produce until you have washed it thoroughly in water or a vinegar solution to get rid of any surface dirt or bacteria that may be on the lettuce. If this is not done, your lettuce could get ruined quickly so take care of it right away.
That’s it! Follow the steps above on how to grow head, leaf or romaine lettuce using proper sanitation methods and you will have a nice supply of healthy greens all season long.
So this is how to Harvest Lettuce.