Lettuce For Beauty And Food

Colorful lettuces are still available at most garden centers.

Pots can be planted now with single or mixed colors.

This pot of lettuce is ready for harvesting.

It is not too late to grow some lettuces. While it is a bit too late to seed, transplants are now the way to go. And the best way I have found this late into the season to grow them is in pots, so not only can you enjoy eating them but also enjoy their beauty outdoors. There are two things I do now to produce maximum effect; plant the pots dense enough to produce a show, but not so dense they will not have room to grow, and secondly, if the roots of the individual plants are matted I make sure they are separated somewhat at planting. As with most vegetables they like a sunny spot especially this time of the year and need to be planted in well drained rich potting mix in a pot with drainage. Once set after planting, water as needed but be careful not to over water. Liquid feed every other week, and instead of harvesting whole plants, pick the leaves. Not only will you enjoy fresh lettuce as a culinary delight but a beautiful pot of color to adorn your garden.

John Floyd

John Floyd has been gardening--and learning about Birmingham area gardening--for more than 30 years. In addition to his day-to-day experience, John has degrees in horticulture from Auburn and Clemson Universities and was Editor-in-Chief of Southern Living.

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