Lettuce makes a great addition to a container garden because the plant has short roots that are well suited for this type of planting. You will find numerous delicious lettuce types that you can add to your container garden.
Growing lettuce in a container
Lettuce will grow in almost any container as long as it has adequate drainage holes for excess water. Lettuce likes sun as long as it isn’t too hot so pick a location that gets heat but not the full blast of the afternoon sun. You can find lettuce varieties that are more heat tolerant if you don’t have much shade where you live. Lettuce will also tolerate some colder days and will even hold up against some mild frost conditions.
You can start lettuce plants from seeds or from established nursery plants. Seeds can be slow to germinate and may take up to two weeks to produce seedlings so it is usually best to buy established plants to transfer into your own pots at home. If you use seeds plants them in early spring so you have lettuce once the summer starts. If you are planting lettuce in the summer you should wait until the weather gets a bit cooler and it is closer to fall. You can grow the crop all summer if you pick the heat-tolerant brands. Plain leaf lettuce is one of the easiest lettuce brands to grow. Iceberg lettuce is the most familiar to most people but is harder to grow so stick with leaf style lettuce.
Space the plants in your pot about eight inches apart so the lettuce has room to grow. If using seeds just sprinkle a few seeds on the top of the soil. You can thin out the seedlings once they get going so that there is room for your lettuce to thrive in your pot. Use a good potting soil with some organic material which you can find at any garden center. Lettuce will take between 45 to 60 days to mature before you can harvest it.
Use some fertilizer to help with the growth and be sure to water your plants often but don’t drench them with water.
Lettuce can be hit by several pests including worms and aphids. Spring crops won’t suffer as much from pests as the summer crops so lettuce is best planted in the spring. Your local garden center can help you deal with any pests you encounter if you don’t know what to do. Lack of water and poorly draining soil can contribute to root problems. Over watering your plants can also contribute to disease and plant death.
You can grow many different lettuce types in containers. Start with leaf style lettuce for the best results. Lettuce can be planted in the spring or later summer and prefers cooler weather although you can get more heat tolerant plants. Add some lettuce to your container garden and enjoy this vegetable with your daily meals.
Check out how to grow tomatoes in a greenhouse with this article by GardenDIY.