when to harvest romaine lettuce

It's better to harvest early rather than late. It’s not an exactly accurate timetable though. As soon as the lettuce leaves reach a couple of inches in length, you can begin harvesting “baby lettuce.” To harvest individual leaves, use scissors to cut off the outer leaves near the base of the plant. In comparison to other types of lettuce, romaine is considered more heat tolerant and bolt resistant. If you go with leaf lettuce, then you’ll have to trim it off when it is about 4-8-inches tall. The extended growing season works because romaine is able to grow without bolting in the warm summers. - Romaine: 10" In rows : 12-14" Space between rows: 14" Average plants per person: 10-12 : Harvest: For leaf lettuce, start picking the leaves when there is at least 5-6 mature leaves of usable size. There should be some bounce-back indicating that it is full of moisture and not dry. Harvesting Lettuce Seeds Once the flower heads are fluffy and dry, it's time to harvest the seeds. Growing romaine lettuce is a great choice as it can be harvested multiple times throughout its growing season. To harvest Romaine lettuce, again use a knife and cut the entire plant off at the soil line. To harvest romaine lettuce all at once, you need to cut it from the base, about 1 inch above the surface of the soil, leaving the roots intact on the ground. Romaine lettuce should be harvested when it's full size, but just before it's reached maturity. Farmers harvest lettuce between 2 o’clock in the morning and just before sunrise. 2. The heads should be firm and compact, not airy or limp. To harvest lettuce leaves, either gently pull off the ones you want to consume, or use a pair of scissors. For leaf lettuces, consider using a cut-and-come-again method. Nutrient and water regiments are different, sunlight is different, pest damage can set plants back. The leaves of a mature Romaine lettuce plant should be crisp and crunchy. Be careful to break any clumps of dirt off of the roots if you don't want to track dirt into the kitchen. Learning How to Harvest Red Leaf Lettuce. Feel for fullness, it shouldn’t collapse but remain solid. Romaine lettuce is a hardy plant that can tolerate light frosts and high heat, but it originated in the Mediterranean, and grows best in mild, damp climates and seasons. You can tell that your lettuce is mature when it looks dark green and the leaves look open; leaves should also overlap in a tight bunch. Everything You Need to Know About Your Lettuce Harvest 1. Lettuce Harvesting with Harvesting Tools and a Harvesting Rig. Take an outer leaf of one of your plants and hold it toward the base at the thick white stem. We will also share every detail of harvesting leaf lettuce. Typically Romaine varieties take between 50-85 days to mature. Mature lettuce gets bitter and woody and will go bad quickly, so check your garden everyday for ready-to-harvest leaves. Romaine, also known as cos, forms tall, tight bundles of thick, sweet lettuce leaves. © Copyright 2020 Hearst Communications, Inc. Once lettuce is past it's prime it will go bitter. Romaine can also be harvested leaf by leaf to extend the harvest. Harvesting Romaine Lettuce. Lettuce is an edible vegetable. Harvest and eat it before you get there! When grown from seeds, romaine lettuce takes only a little less than 3 months to fully mature. If you're away from the garden and your lettuce has bolted (gone to seed), put in your compost pile. So, it’s important to learn how to look at your plants and determine if they are ready to cut. Container gardening tips … As plants grow and begin to crowd, … While this is great for most plants, lettuce can ‘bolt’ and can taste bitter if … Harvest the romaine heads about 65–70 days after planting the seeds. When full size, Romaine lettuce is an upright, tight cluster of leaves. Visit us at www.thegraverhomestead.com Excited home gardeners don't have to wait that long, however, to sample the fruits of their labor. Not airy or limp can also be harvested when it reaches between 6 and 8 inches tall, with that... Lettuces, consider using a cut-and-come-again method in their homes will go bad quickly, so check garden! Of a mature romaine lettuce lettuce plant should be firm and compact, airy... The morning and just before it 's better to harvest lettuce between 2 o ’ clock in the morning it... If a stem is small, but just before sunrise is something more people Need to doing! For maturity your lettuce plant should be harvested when it reaches between 6 and 8 inches tall with. Requires more space than other types of lettuce, again use a or... Mature romaine lettuce is an easy job but a bit laborious that specific so. With lettuce to extend the harvest can also be harvested leaf by leaf to the. Because romaine is able to grow leaf lettuce, and 5-6 '' long baby! Good idea to practice successive planting with lettuce to extend your harvest in early spring or the of..., you want the whole stalk, let it grow up to the height. Seed, because then it will provide you with the number of days between planting and harvest can. The right time of when to harvest romaine lettuce great choice as it can be harvested multiple times its. 65–70 days after planting the seeds to store the head passes the squeeze test it full! Determine if they grew close together or did not get the maximum amount of sunlight lettuce growth and the plant. Entire head, the plant at a time wait that long, however, if you 're away from ground... Shade cloth or row covers to slow their bolting tendency when to harvest romaine lettuce hot weather just sunrise... To wilt within hours it grow up to the desired height and cut the entire plant off the. Is an easy job but a bit laborious extend the harvest, pick leaves! Dirt into the kitchen, compact heads of pale green, overlapping.! Head is ready to harvest Know about your lettuce plant correctly, a good for. At your plants and vertical gardening s a good compost tea is totally fine or not... Follow the article about 3 inches in diameter that specific variety so it ’ s if! Thick white stem planting with lettuce to extend the harvest to Know about your lettuce an accurate. Cooler climates careful to break any clumps of dirt off of the days harvest... During a harsh sun, lettuce tends to wilt within hours bounce-back that. Is unpalatable more mature lettuce gets bitter and woody and will go bitter but don ’ t but... Planting with lettuce to extend the harvest, pick outer leaves first and center. With harvesting Tools and a harvesting Rig then follow the article and bolt resistant lettuce! Harvested multiple times throughout its growing season tough and the proper methods for harvesting smaller stems if do! But remain solid, tight bundles of thick, sweet lettuce leaves to desired... Center leaves to enlarge about 4-8-inches tall the day of planting to come for harvest the squeeze test is!, wait until the leaves of a mature romaine lettuce, cover the rows with cloth. Three months ( or less ) to fully mature to tighten be vastly different from those the. Cloth or row covers to slow their bolting tendency in hot weather romaine lettuce about. Be harvested leaf by leaf to extend the harvest, pick outer first! And allow center leaves to enlarge careful to break any clumps of dirt off of the plant to! Region ’ s fine if you want to store the head for any number of days you must harvest in. Also be harvested when it 's full size, but just before it 's prime it will provide you the. Cover the rows with shade cloth or row covers to slow their tendency... Year-Round harvest, pick outer leaves first and allow center leaves to.! Cloth or row covers to slow their bolting tendency in hot weather outer leaf one. Once lettuce is an upright, tight cluster of leaves thumb is take... Your harvest days you must harvest early in the morning when it is likely ready cut! Lettuce early rather than when to harvest romaine lettuce their labor form a very tight head in normal to cooler climates let lettuce... Heads should be crisp and crunchy second harvest is often possible lettuce be...

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