Question From: Madison, Wisconsin, United States
Q: I've planted tomato, peppers and basil but never lettuce. Today I saw the most beautiful containers of mixed lettuce and had to buy one! There are three types or more all in one container (Red, green, varied leaf). The container is 7 inches tall, and 6" square on the sides narrowing at the base. The leaves are already about 6-7" tall. Ready to eat! I've read details on your site about lettuce, transplanting, heat/wind verses cool, need for shade, etc But I'm not sure what to do with this container of lettuce I just bought to keep it growing! Do I put it in the ground? Not knowing otherwise, my thoughts were to put it in the ground next to the two tomato plants I put in a screened area with some extra organic soil mixed in. But given that it gets hot and humid here (WI), and lettuce doesn't want a lot of direct sun, I'm thinking it would make more sense to just keep it in the house/AC, in a window for some sun but not all day. I'm also guessing I'd need a bigger planter to let the lettuce spread out, more space for roots, etc? Can I just pick and eat from it daily? How far down to the base should I cut the leaves as I eat it? Just never have done this before. Does it replenish itself regularly while I keep eating it? Rules to follow???? Thanks!!
You'll need a much larger container or plant it in the ground. Lettuce will not do well in the hot sun so find an area that gets morning sun. You may harvest the lettuce by cutting off 2/ 3rds of the leaves on a plant. It will resprout again and possilbly a third time. You may also cut individual leaves from the plant. The plant will bolt and go to seed in a couple of months. Reseeding every ten days will give you a summer long supply. While you can start lettuce seeds indoors, it doesn't do well as a houseplant. Best And Happy Yardening, Nancy