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why does my lettuce sprawl?

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why does my lettuce sprawl?

Post  mdntdncr on 5/6/2011, 10:54 am

I've grown lettuce (or attempted) several times. But my lettuce, mostly romaine,
but a few others always sprawls. It never heads.

Can someone tell me why? and how can I make it head?

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Re: why does my lettuce sprawl?

Post  quiltbea on 5/6/2011, 11:16 am

There are 2 types of lettuces, head and leaf lettuce.
Most are leaf lettuce and don't really form heads.
You just harvest the outer leaves as needed and the plant continues to grow more leaves.
Or you can cut the whole thing down to within an inch of the ground and it will regrow. If you remove it wholly, including roots, no new lettuce will grow there.
You've obviously got leaf lettuce.
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Re: why does my lettuce sprawl?

Post  ashort on 5/6/2011, 11:39 am



Hey there from SE TX? Where you stay down there? I lived in Houston and Beaumont for five years!

As to your question - what does the seed package say? - what variety? as there are umpteen different kinds of lettuce...
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Re: why does my lettuce sprawl?

Post  Squat_Johnson on 5/6/2011, 2:31 pm

I'm not sure what's going on with your lettuce, but here's what I have learned this year that I did not know before...

Head lettuce is very sensitive to heat. I suspect that it is the TX sun causing the problem.

Until I started lettuce seed under flourescent light in Feb, I could not get good head lettuce. This is the first time I have had much luck. Key seems to be time your planting to avoid the hot weather.

I am going to try some in the shade of my tomato patch, and see if I can beat the heat!
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Re: why does my lettuce sprawl?

Post  mdntdncr on 5/6/2011, 3:31 pm

Thank you, all . . .

It is typical head romaine lettuce and I'm growing it indoors.
The picture shows it growing like the romaine heads you see in the stores as well.

but this grows out in sections: a long stem with a leaf and another stem coming
off of that one that turns into a leaf, then another stem coming off of that one.
It looks like some ladder crawling off across the ground.

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Re: why does my lettuce sprawl?

Post  Furbalsmom on 5/6/2011, 4:09 pm

Do you have pictures?

The leaves on my head romaine all grow from the center and when it bolts, the center grows a stem and then the leaves grow off of the stem.
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Re: why does my lettuce sprawl?

Post  elliephant on 5/6/2011, 4:57 pm

That's the way my lettuce starting growing when it's going to bolt.

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Re: why does my lettuce sprawl?

Post  mdntdncr on 5/6/2011, 5:17 pm

So you're saying that it's too hot inside my house, eh?
That's too bad. But buying my lettuce is cheaper than air conditioning my house.

sigh . . I was hoping to grow lettuce year round.

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Re: why does my lettuce sprawl?

Post  Miss M on 5/7/2011, 2:30 am

It could be bolting, or it could be not getting enough light. Like the problem of having "leggy" seedlings because of growing them indoors. Getting enough full-spectrum light to them can be a challenge.

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