Olya M
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Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Oct 30, 2017 3:34 am
Location: Zone 7

What is wrong with my lettuce?

This started when the (large) pots the lettuce is planted in were out on my deck in Sept through early Oct.
I have the pots inside now, to keep them from being effected by frost. They never did get hit by frost when they were out.
I am in Zone 7.

Thanks for any suggestions

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Posts: 28047
Joined: Thu May 01, 2008 11:21 pm
Location: Zone 6, NJ (3/M)4/E ~ 10/M

Re: What is wrong with my lettuce?

They look ready to harvest. Three possible causes I can think of are — heat stress, fungal infection, or sucking insects. They are closely planted and may not be getting sufficient air circulation. Watch out for slugs.

I would carefully remove all of the wilted and damaged leaves using long, sharp scissors, assess and start harvesting every other head, or — even though these are heading lettuce, you can harvest the outer leaves as they become eating quality. That’s the beauty of home gardening. You can have fresh lettuce harvested right out of the garden minutes before eating.

Have a container of cold water ready and float the lettuce in it as soon as you harvest. My general rule is to rinse three times in sufficient water for them to swim so any grit will float free and sink. Add ice cubes to the final rinse water to crisp them.
Learning never ends because we can share what we've learned. And in sharing our collective experiences, we gain deeper understanding of what we learned.

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Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:32 pm
Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Re: What is wrong with my lettuce?

The lettuce are planted to close. If you plant them 8-10 inches apart, they would have more room to grow. I do agree with applestar, it is time to make salad. The older leaves are senescing. You may also have thrips or aphids. You may have to check under magnification to see that.

Most lettuce in prime weather can be ready to eat in as little as 5 weeks from seed. When the weather is hotter, they will bolt prematurely. In cold weather, lettuce does ok, but grow much slower and may take 50-60 days to mature depending on the variety. You can harvest outer leaves from thumb size up.

Lettuce has a very small harvest window once it reaches maturity. The sap will get milkier and the leaves will become tough and bitter.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

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