When many of us think of lettuce, the heads of the iceberg variety commonly seen in most grocery stores come to mind. However, there is more lettuce variety out there that is much better tasting and sweet, crisp, and excitingly flavorful.
The best part about lettuce is that you can grow it yourself, as it is one of the easiest crops to develop and maintain.
When To Plant
Lettuce is a plant that prefers cooler weather. It does not like the hotter months of the year and will show its dislike by bolting (where it stops growing and flowers instead) and turning bitter. Although most gardeners grow their lettuce in the spring months, the fall and winter months are great for growing as well.
The seedlings are durable, and as such, are capable of surviving a light to medium frost. I live in zone 6b, and my family has always waited until late March to plant their lettuce. I have fellow gardeners in other areas of the US that have said they plant their lettuce as early as February.
Where To Plant
Lettuce is a very versatile plant in that you can plant it just about anywhere. It will flourish in the garden, in potted plants, or in between your begonias in your flower bed. It is not so much where you plant it, but the soil it is planted in. Lettuce prefers well-drained, loose soil. For the best yields, plant your lettuce in full sun. If this is not an option, it can do well in partial shade—especially as the days grow hotter.
Lettuce is a good jump-off vegetable when teaching your children about gardening. They not only learn about how healthy lettuce can be and how fun it is to grow, but they might be more willing to eat something that they themselves had a hand in producing.