Is it necessary to cover lettuce after planting? My grandparents always made lettuce beds llike tobacco beds and covered them with tobacco canvas.
The Gardener’s Answer
Hello, Charlotte in Kentucky: Lettuce and other greens are considered cool-season crops and can be sown directly into the garden now. If the temperatures drop into the 20s you will want to cover them but otherwise they are happy to germinate and grow during cooler weather. The colder the temperatures, the longer it will take for the seeds to germinate. Lettuce can be grown directly in the soil but also makes for a nice container planting. Preparing the soil is an important first step in any successful vegetable garden. If you have not already chosen a space for the greens to grow, now is the time to do so. Ideally this space would be south-facing so that it will receive plenty of sunshine. The soil should be fertile and well-drained. If you are interested in reading more about vegetable gardening in Kentucky, the following publication is available to home gardeners from the Extension Service. It has detailed planting information on home vegetable gardening in Kentucky: www.ca.uky.edu/agc/pubs/id/id128/id128.pdf. The great thing about cool-season crops is that we get to plant them again in the fall. Freshly harvested greens are a yummy addition to the dinner table!