Growing & Caring for Lettuce

Lettuce is a cool season crop that enjoys a little shade. It is easy to grow and does well in cool spring and fall weather. Though it is quick growing and slow to bolt, it is best to plant lettuce in successive plantings to keep growing fresh lettuce all season long.

How to Grow Lettuce:

  • Lettuce is best sown outdoors as soon as soil is able to be worked and reaches 65 degrees F.
  • Thoroughly till soil before planting. Scatter seeds lightly across a 12 inch wide row. 
  • Sow the seeds at 2-week intervals until temperatures reach 80 degrees F for continued harvest.
  • Space rows about 18 inches apart.
  • Thin seedlings to 6″ apart to give plants plenty of room to grow.
  • If the weather starts to become too hot your lettuce may begin to bolt, or go to seed.


  • You can start lettuce seeds indoors 4 weeks before transplanting outside. Or, if you plant in a container, sow seeds before you plan to move the container outdoors.
  • Keep temperatures between 65 - 68 degrees F and expect to see sprouts in 7-10 days. 


  • Pick from plant and use before it starts to bolt and becomes bitter tasting.
  • Wrap washed lettuce leaves in a paper towel and store in plastic bag in fridge for up to 7 days.

Growing Tips

  • Water 1″ per week.

Pests to Watch For:

  • Aphids
  • Slugs
  • Small Green Caterpillars
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