Friday, December 12, 2008


I grew 3 varieties of leaf lettuce this past spring; Black Seeded Simpson, Salad Bowl and Red Sails.
They all grew very well and we picked lots of lettuce. Around the middle of June, it started to grow taller and very soon sent up seed heads and that was the end of the spring lettuce.

I decided to try growing it again for the fall and planted the same 3 varieties about the 1st week of September. I figured that I had enough time to pick two or three times before freezing weather. The 1st frost on average is around the 1st of November in this part of Tennessee.
Things worked out as planned and we started picking lettuce near the middle of October. We picked a lot of nice lettuce along with the Squirrel. (already pictured in the 2nd Post on Dec 8th)
The first frost came I put up plastic covers over the bed and no damage to the lettuce. 2nd frost about a week later, same story.
Then came a prediction for temperatures in the low 20’s, put the cover on again and lettuce looked a little wilted next morning but no damage.
Then came a prediction of 18° F and I forgot to put the covers over the beds. I told my wife that we probably would’t be eating anymore lettuce from the garden this year. Next morning lettuce was very wilted, but by afternoon it was back up and crisp looking. We picked, ate and it was fine.

We are still picking and eating the lettuce. The picture just above this was taken this afternoon 12-12-08. I get surprised by things like this all the time in the garden. Maybe I should know better, but since most of my gardening was in Florida (very little frost or freezing weather) I thought frost and freezing killed everything.


Dan said...

That is some mighty good looking lettuce you have grown.

I wish I could say the same about mine but I planted to late and the slugs ate what sprouted. Good thing there is always next year.

engineeredgarden said...

Thanks for sharing that information, Skip. I'm gonna do a few things differently with my next planting, and of course - some hoop covers will be constructed. I miss the lettuce from this fall, it was so good to be able to pick from the garden each day, and have a nice salad. I'd love to see some pictures of your covers in place, and how you fastened them to the hoops.

As you know, I normally design my own stuff, but will look very closely at yours and sinfonian's setups.