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Lettuce and Onion Questions

Hi all,

First post :)

This is my first year ever doing a garden. I've been trying to read up on this stuff but have a few basic questions regarding lettuce and onions. I've created a raised bed, filled it with soil, manure, peat moss, and miracle grow, and have gotten some of my plants from local farmers, some from local nurseries, and some from Lowes :)

Question 1: How does romaine lettuce grow? I bought an already started lettuce plant and put it in the bed. Will I just cut leaves off of the plant as they mature, or do I let the entire plant mature and harvest it? Will this plant give me lettuce throughout the season, or just 1 single head of lettuce?

Question 2: For onions, I bought onion bulbs and planted those. Will each bulb mature into only one onion? Or will one bulb give me multiple onions?

Thank you very kindly,

Bob Garden

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Super Green Thumb
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Location: Northern Utah Zone 5

Lettuce: You only get one head from a plant. You can rob a leaf now and then or take the whole plant. Your choice. I like to take the whole plant. Look at the leaf lettuces in the grocery to get an idea how they will turn out.

Onions: If you plant one set (small bulb) you get one onion bulb. It will be considerably larger though. Onions are one of those delightful plants that you can eat at any stage of its development. Plant plenty so you have some for green onions and some bulbs for fresh eating, and some bulbs for storage.

Welcome to the forum.

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Location: South Lake Tahoe, Ca.

Romaine usually gives one time. I have had plants give me a smaller second yield. That was from cutting the plant higher up.

Other lettuces can give you multiple yields.
Some are Simpson, Bibb, Red Leaf, Oak Leaf & my favorite, Mesclun Mix.

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Super Green Thumb
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Joined: Sun Jan 18, 2009 10:20 pm
Location: Northern Utah Zone 5

If you give lettuce some space and thin it this is what you can get. This is one plant. I would harvest the whole plant.


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Location: Zone 6, NJ (3/M)4/E ~ 10/M(11/B)

That's a gorgeous head of lettuce!

I'm going to present an alternate opinion. I think one of the benefits of growing lettuce is that you DON'T have to harvest the whole head. In my house, I can't use up the whole head in one meal. So being able to gather enough FRESH outer leaves for a salad or just a handful of leaves for sandwiches, instead of digging out a bag of sad looking head out of the fridge, is a boon.

I only cut the whole head if I'm giving it away (and I only minimally cut the outer leaves on the ones earmarked for give-away to preserve the grocery store appearance....)

If you plant it so the lettuce gets shaded from the mid-day sun once the trees leaf out or other vegetables grow up and hot weather arrives, they last a little longer. I let a few of them go to seed last year so hopefully, I'll have self-seeded lettuce. If that doesn't work, I will COLLECT seeds this year. :>

There is a type of onion called multiplier or potato onions that make multiple bulbs (not the big single bulb), kind of like shallots. I planted some last fall for the first time. So I won't be able to tell you what they're like until later this year. I also planted Egyptian top-setting onions, but these are grown for green onions, and the top-sets are for planting, not eating.

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