growing organic leaf lettuce from a cut-off root of same

(Question)

Hi!

I live in a condo in downtown Toronto (and I have a west-facing balcony). I bought a small organic head of leaf lettuce (not sure which kind but it tasted very sweet and had dark leaves). Whole Foods has a chart called Food That Magically Regrows Itself. I can’t upload it here for some reason. It looks like about a 4″-diameter pot. I’m wondering exactly what kind of soil to use in the pot (I have a lot of Scotts potting soil) and if the small pot in the picture (that I can’t upload) is big enough. Would it need to be transplanted at some point?

Thank you!

 

(Answer)

Hi,

I think the chart at Whole Foods is derived from one posted on a blog called “Cooking Stoned” by Jerry James Stone. If so, he recommends using the stump of romaine lettuce, so I’m not sure if your leaf lettuce will work. First, place it in a shallow dish of water and mist regularly until roots appear. Then, transplant it into a pot filled with a soilless mix (The Scotts potting soil that you have should be fine). According to his blog, it takes about five months for the head to regrow.

Another fun thing to do with leaf lettuce (any variety that doesn’t form a head) is to try what’s know as the “cut and ccome again” method. Simply sprinkle some seeds over a seed tray filled with fine soilless mix (try to find a formulation for seedlings). Water and cover with a plastic lid until the seeds sprout. Remove the lid and place the tray in a sunny window. As the leaves mature, cut them for salads, leaving about a third on the bottom of the plant, and the leaves will regrow. To make this even simpler, instead of a seed tray, reuse a clamshell package in which many berries are sold. It’s a fun project for kids, too!

Here’s more information on growing cut and come again lettuce in clam shells.

https://www.motherearthnews.com/homesteading-and-livestock/growing-lettuce-indoors-small-space-gardening.aspx#axzz2wdJxVvvc

https://yougrowgirl.com/growing-food-on-a-windowsill-microgreens/

https://allthedirtongardening.blogspot.ca/2010/11/i-love-to-grow-salad-in-winter.html

 

Enjoy!