Their are different types of lettuce. Great salads start with freshly picked lettuce. Lettuce is best eaten right after you pick it. That is why it is a great idea to grow your own. Lettuce grows the best in cool conditions . For a summer crop choose heat-tolerant varieties and plant in semi-shaded areas. Here are the different types of lettuce and how to grow them.
BATAVIAN LETTUCE: This is a loosely headed type of crisphead lettuce. It tends to be more favorable then the iceberg types. These varieties have purplish or rosy outer leaves.
ROMAINE LETTUCE: Romaine varieties will form upright heads of sturdy leaves that have thick midribs. The heads range from eight to over twelve inches tall. The leaves may be smooth or ruffled and some varieties have red-tinged or red-speckled leaves. Romaine lettuce is probably the most sweetest of all the lettuce.
CRISPHEAD LETTUCE: Iceberg types have dense heads with nearly white leaves at the center. Burpee’s Iceberg is the variety that brought crisphead lettuce to fame. Crisphead lettuce can be challenging to grow especially in the humid southern regions. For best results plant when at least two months of moderate temperatures will follow.
BUTTERHEAD LETTUCE: This type of lettuce forms heads of loosely folded, soft leaves. Butterhead lettuce is heat-tolerant and easy to grow. This lettuce is a good choice for the home gardener to grow.
LOOSELEAF LETTUCE: The lettuce is easy to grow and the plants are beautiful. They have a wide range of leaf colors and forms. The leaves may be crinkled, ruffled, notched or curled. They range from green and yellowish green to reddish and bronze. When you want to add a little color to your salad this is the lettuce for you.
Here are the easy to follow instructions on how to plant and care for your lettuce.The best time to grow lettuce is in late winter to early spring. First spread a two inch layer over the soil and work it in. Lettuce grows the best in rich loose soil. Remove any clumps in the soil before planting. Add a compost or a balanced organic fertilizer between plantings. Sow ten seeds every week or two weeks. Plant seeds or plants six to twelve inches apart and eighteen to twenty four inches apart in rows. You can sow seeds in garden beds, but it is better to sow seeds in pots or flats. Potted seedlings grow quicker and you can transplant them within three weeks. When watering make sure you water whenever the top two inches of soil becomes dry. It is recommended to fertilize once a month with an organic fertilizer.