Growing lettuce in the garden and on the balcony: what you should know for sure

Lettuce is an indulgent vegetable when it comes to growing. A few tips can actually help with the fertile harvest.

Dortmund – Harvesting fresh lettuce leaves from the garden or balcony is easier than you think. Because lettuce has relatively few requirements when it comes to cultivation, and therefore it is also a thing for beginners in the garden. In order to be able to harvest healthy, large heads of lettuce, some tips on sowing, care, and location should be observed.

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plant genus lettuce
Tips Including sowing, care and location

Lettuce cultivation: when is sowing and harvest possible – direct sowing outdoors or growing indoors?

It is easy to grow lettuce in pots or boxes in the garden or on the balcony. Direct sowing allows them to be sown immediately or indoors in seed pots. When lettuce plants are grown directly outdoors, they can develop a deep root system and are less likely to flower early. The roots can then have better access to the water reserves in the soil and require less watering.

Lettuce can also be planted indoors in spring under protected conditions. Then the seedlings have a harvest advantage of about four weeks when they are planted later. For this, the seeds can be placed in pots four to five centimeters wide or in seed trays. If you want to harvest lettuce well in the fall, you can sow new seeds every two weeks. In order to avoid mistakes, some tips should be observed when growing.

Lettuce cultivation: Tips for growing lettuce – germination temperature, location, time, soil

Since lettuce germinates in the light, it is best to just cover it a little with sand. Lettuce germination temperature varies depending on the variety. However, a temperature of more than 20 degrees often leads to inhibition of seed germination. For this reason, March and April are suitable for no-till lettuce in most areas. The lower temperature can delay germination, but it can still work.

Vegetables and berries can be grown in your own garden. However, the usual mistakes when drawing should be avoided. (Icon picture)

© skabarcat / imago

Lettuce plants do not have any special requirements on the soil. Loose, nutrient-rich and low-nitrogen soils are suitable for fast, lush growth. Acidic or muddy soils often result in poor harvests. Mixing sand into humus-rich soils results in loose soil. The site should be sunny for spring culture and at least partially shaded and cooler in summer.

Growing lettuce: Tips on caring for lettuce plants – this leads to a good harvest

Common garden lettuce should only be planted on the same plot every four years. Therefore, crop rotation should be observed at best with lettuce. Recommended initial planting includes leeks, spinach or onions. Previous green manure can also be beneficial for growth. In addition, when planting, sufficient distance must be maintained between plants for large heads to develop (more on gardening in RUHR24).

Regular watering prevents the lettuce leaves from becoming hard and the plant from growing flowers. Once the lettuce heads are closed, watering should be reduced and only on the surface of the soil. If the soil is suitable, fertilization is not necessary. Applying mulch can also retain moisture in the soil and prevent weeds. Salads are highly susceptible to pests like slugs, which is why so-called collars of slugs or slugs can be beneficial.

Almost anyone can grow lettuce.

© Shotshop / Imago

Growing lettuce on the balcony: this should be taken into account when growing in pots or balcony boxes

You don’t need your own garden to harvest your lettuce. Unpretentious vegetables can also be grown on the balcony. Planters should fill in nutrient poor soil and some sand. A special plant soil from a specialty store can also be used. Lettuce varieties Lollo Rosso and Lollo Bionda are especially suitable for growing in pots. In addition to lettuce, cucumbers can also be grown on the balcony.

If you want to save yourself the chores of seeding, you can also get ready-made mini lettuce plants from a nearby garden center or hardware store. It should only be noted that lettuce plants are not planted very deeply. The roots should remain directly above the ground. With purchased plants, ground pressure pots can protrude a few centimeters from the ground.

List of rules: © skabarcat / imago

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