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Lettuce reconsider

By Penny Stine

Just when I say I’m done with lettuce, I take a nibble and change my mind. I planted the lettuce in this pot back in late February. The red leaf lettuce grew quickly and was big enough to pick long before the green was. I picked it and it was disgusting. Bitter, vile and nasty.


The green leaf stuff was quite a bit smaller, but I sampled it and it was OK. The other day, I was picking spinach for a salad, so I decided to try the green stuff again now that it’s a little bigger. It was actually good! So I picked a bunch to put in my salad and a bunch for my morning smoothie.

 

The red stuff was still awful. At least it’s pretty in my container.

 

 

I discovered this lettuce growing out where I’ve transplanted raspberries and am expecting the tomatillos to take over later in the summer. It’s called Trout’s Back lettuce, and I planted it last year. It must have gone to seed, since I have more this summer. Last year, it was just OK. I sampled a tiny bit (since it’s not quite big enough to pick) and it wasn’t too bad, so I’ll leave it be in hopes that all the cool, wet weather will help it taste better than it did last year.

 

Back in February when I planted the lettuce in the containers on my deck, I had a few seeds left over, so I scattered them in a southern flower bed. Although I watered, they didn’t germinate. Until just a few weeks ago, and now here they are, looking ready to produce greens for the next month or so. Good thing it’s the green leaf and not the red leaf, or I’d just yank it out.

There’s also a zinnia starting to grow next to the lettuce. I like to scatter zinnia and giant marigold seeds in this bed, where I also have sweet peppers and melons. It’s right out in front of the house, so the flowers make it seem more like a cheerful flowerbed than one more vegetable plot.  

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