I want to show you how to grow lettuce even if you don't have a garden for growing vegetables! This method is really simple and all you need is a bag of good quality potting soil, a few handfuls of fertilizer and some lettuce plants. No need for pots or window boxes!
Lettuce is a quick and easy crop that won't last forever so there is no need for a very deep container or garden bed. A bag of potting soil supplies enough growing space for this crop.
You can either buy lettuce plants from a local garden center or you can start your own lettuce seedlings in cell trays. I explain here how you can sow your own lettuce.
If you want to grow lettuce in the summer choose a semi-shaded spot. In a hot place, the plants will bolt prematurely. Sun in the morning or in the evening is ideal.
Use loose or pick-leaf varieties for this method. You can get much more out of these types of lettuce as they regrow after picking. Check out SeedsNow for a great selection of seeds!
You can also use greens like mizuna, spinach, mustard leaves, radishes or arugula. Just remember that these are best grown either early in spring or from August onwards because they go to seed very quickly during the summer.
Step 1: Buy a bag of good potting soil. We like to use organic potting soil but you can also use a multi-purpose type.
Step 2: Prepare the bag
Shake up the soil in the bag before you cut any holes into it. The soil can be hard and compacted sometimes if you get one from the bottom of the stack....so shake it up well.
We put the bags on pallets to ensure good drainage but you can also put them on a table, bench, gravel, etc..
Step 3: Cut a rectangular opening leaving the sides of the bag intact so that the soil won't fall out.
Punch a few holes into the bottom of the bag for drainage.
Step 4: Mix an organic vegetable fertilizer into the soil. We also like to add a handful of seaweed powder for an extra boost of minerals in there. This should eliminate the need for any additional fertilizer later on. If you want to skip this step you will have to add a liquid fertilizer regularly when you are watering.
Step 5: Plant your lettuce seedlings! In a 60l bag, you can fit about 6-8 plants. Water them in carefully.
Step 6: Start harvesting once the plants are mature. Pick the outer leaves and give the lettuce enough time to regrow. Lettuce plants will start to bolt during the long hot summer days. Just remove them from the bags, mix in more fertilizer and plant new ones. You can reuse the bag several times before replacing it!
If you want to learn more about growing lettuce check this page!
Download our FREE Gardening4Climate guide and learn how to do just that in your own backyard with permaculture gardening!
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