Container gardening is pretty popular right now, isn’t it?
Growing plants in container has some benefits, some of them are:
- Mobility/flexibility. You can move your plants every day according to your need. Is this position bad for landscaping? Move it to another place. Does this plant require a bit of shade? Move it to somewhere else that is shaded.
- More variety. When you grow plants directly to the ground of your garden, chances are you only have 1 type of soil. And that soil might not be capable of bearing EVERY type of plant because different plants can have different needs. When you practice container gardening, you can put different soil for different containers.
- Less risk of soil-borne disease. Since container gardening lets you put different soil for different pots, each soil cannot ruin another one that sits in a different pot. When something wrong happens with ONE of those soil, you should worry only about the container which carries that soil.
- More renter-friendly. You don’t need to dig the ground or build a permanent fence to start container gardening. You can use lightweight pots or even pots with wheels which can help you move the plants when you need to move somewhere else.
Now you can grow so many plants using the container gardening methods. If you love beautiful landscaping, you can grow colorful flowers. If you love edible gardening, you can grow fruits or vegetables in pots!
One of the vegetables that can grow in pots is LETTUCE.
Yes, you can grow lettuce in containers. And this plant is perfect for renters since it’s not too big and you don’t need to wait too long to harvest.
Growing Lettuce in Pots Needs A Certain Condition
Growing lettuce is fairly easy. But make sure that you fulfill these condition to help them grow well.
- Prepare a deep tray OR a shallow, wide container with enough drainage holes. Small pots are fine, but they tend to drain faster so you need to water more. A moderately deep container is actually capable of carrying a lettuce plant BUT lettuce plants have short roots so you probably will have a bit of difficulty when harvesting it.
- Make sure that the soil is loose, moist, cool, and rich (you can amend the soil with organic matter such as rotted manure or compost).
- Also, make sure that the soil has a pH around 6.0-7.0
- If you live in a cooler area, give your lettuce full sun. If you live in a warmer area, let your lettuce plant enjoy morning sunlight and afternoon shade.
- Give your lettuce plant consistent, shallow watering so the soil is always moist (NOT WET). Don’t let the soil dry.
How to Grow Lettuce in Pot
- Fill the deep tray/wide container with soil, approximately 6-7 inches deep.
- Make some shallow holes (1 inch apart) using your fingers.
- Fill the holes with lettuce seeds, 2-3 seeds per hole.
- Sprinkle some soil so the seeds and holes are covered (approximately 1/8-inch thick). Give some gentle press on the soil with your fingers.
- Spray the soil so the seeds feel some moisture.
- Wait for 3 weeks or until the seedlings has some leaves
- Transplant those tiny plants into the individual pots if you want. Alternatively, you can keep them in the wide container BUT replant some of them in another wide container so the container isn’t too crowded. Each seedling needs to be 4-6 inches apart.
- Give some spray on the soil after transplanting the plants.
- Place the pot so that it can receive full sun (in a cooler region) or partial shade (in a warmer region)
- Water the plant consistently so the soil is always moist.
Harvesting Your Lettuce
As I mentioned before, lettuce is a perfect vegetable plant for renters because it’s fairly small and fast to harvest.
Lettuce has so many varieties with various maturity time.
You don’t need to wait until the lettuce plant reaches maturity to enjoy the harvest. When the leaves reach your desired size, you can immediately harvest them.
Lettuce can be harvested in any time of the year, BUT they taste so good when it’s harvested during the cool months (not cold).
Lettuce also tend to taste better when you harvest it in the morning.
To harvest lettuce, you can just cut the outer leaves (without damaging the root) when they’re still young. They usually grow back so you can harvest more leaves. After the second harvest, you can cut the entire plant with a knife.