When it comes to growing your own lettuce, there really is nothing more satisfying! Knowing that you planted it from seed, cared for it, and then harvested it, just makes it taste that much sweeter! But although you may know how to plant it, you may not know when to harvest lettuce & how to do it correctly! In this easy gardening guide, we'll teach you WHEN to harvest lettuce as well as HOW to harvest it so you have an amazing bounty every single time!
When to Harvest Lettuce
When you harvest lettuce is completely depended on WHEN you planted that lettuce, as you may have already guessed! Lettuce is a cool season crop that cannot tolerate high heat, and therefore it's important to pick lettuce BEFORE temperatures rise too high in the summer.
The variety which you've planted also determines when it should be harvested. As a general rule of thumb, lettuce that was harvested in the fall, will take about 65 days to harvest, while lettuce that was planted in the winter will take about 100 days to harvest.
Another factor that determines harvest time is the temperature during the growing season. Lettuce heads grow best when soil temperatures are cooler rather than warmer. Lettuce seeds can sprout as early as 2 days if the soil temperatures are between 55 and 75F (13-24C). For best results, start seeds indoors, and transplant outdoors 3 weeks later. If you're planting in the winter, do this 3 weeks before the average frost date.
How to Harvest Lettuce:
The best way to harvest lettuce is by using a sharp knife to cut the heads off the stalk when they are still firm. Simply make a clean cut just below the head through the stem. Lettuce heads should also always be harvested in the morning when temperatures aren't too high.
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