Growing lettuces is a very rewarding experience, since in a few weeks we will know that they will be ready for consumption. But sometimes it is important that, before picking them, we tie them so that the bud develops well, so that the plant can have a better appearance. For this reason, I am going to explain to you when and how to tie lettuce . So you can have excellent harvests.
If you want to learn when and how to plant lettuce, here we are going to explain it to you in detail.
The first of all is to know the characteristics and care that lettuces need for proper cultivation. The lettuce tying part is just one part of all the care it takes to thrive in good condition. Lettuce is a vegetable that belongs to the compound family such as endive, artichoke, thistle, etc. It is ideal for all those people who are more beginners in the world of the urban dead.
Let’s see what are the characteristics that make lettuce more suitable for beginners:
- It is not a crop that requires a lot of care and it is hardly affected by pests.
- The growth and development cycle is short . In a short time it can grow and can be harvested, so it can be combined with other vegetables that have a longer cycle to make good use of the space. In addition, you can learn everything you need to know to get to know the world of the urban garden.
- You can combine different varieties to be able to have crops of different species throughout the year.
- It is a crop that adapts quite well to containers . It can not only be grown in the ground, but also in some containers.
Let’s see what only main requirements that lettuce needs to thrive in good conditions. As we’ve mentioned before, tying lettuce is an all-prerequisite phase you need in order for it to thrive well. We are going to analyze what type of irrigation you need. It is a moderately demanding irrigation, especially when forming the bud. It is when the lettuce has to form the bud that it needs the most amount of water. Once the bud has developed, the irrigation becomes medium.
Regarding nutrients, like any vegetable that has leaves, it needs nutrients so that it can flourish. Therefore, it is advisable when developing the bud to apply fertilizer. If it is a non-chemical organic fertilizer much better. The substrate needs 3 liters of volume to grow well . This means that you need an exclusively reserved space so that nutrient color is not seen in competition with another crop.
It is quite common to make a seedbed, although it can also be done by direct sowing. If it is done by direct sowing, then some thinning must be carried out in order to leave a distance between plants of approximately 20-30 centimeters. In the case in which you need to transplant the seedling into a definitive container, the right time is when the plant has more or less 4-5 true leaves. They are leaves that are already fully developed and are not part of the initial seedling.
The lettuce takes about 5-10 to be harvested. You can give a continuous harvest by cutting the leaves that are necessary and making various types of cuts. Especially in the hottest season, the lettuce may rise or glean. If this happens, it means that it is blooming and the leaves become much tougher and bitter in taste . With the leaves of this texture with this flavor it will not be possible to consume and we will have failed in the cultivation.
If we want to have a harvest of lettuces throughout the year, we must carry out a staggered planting. Seedlings that have been removed during thinning are kept in smaller pots until it is time to plant another shift of lettuce. You can also take advantage of the bare root balls to keep them for a few days in a basin with water so that they can be transplanted later.
Although we have mentioned before that they are crops that are not usually attacked by pests, some of them more frequent are the following:
- Slugs and snails : since they have high humidity conditions, manual collection or installation of beer traps is necessary to eliminate them.
- Fungi: appear when there is an excess of humidity. It is best to remove the affected areas and promote aeration.
- Aphids: if there is an excess of nitrogen, aphids can appear. It can be prevented with nettle slurry or with vegetable insecticides.
- Birds: the ideal is to cover the lettuces with a mesh.
When to tie lettuce?
Lettuces have a rapid growth rate: in about three months after sowing they will be ready to harvest. In general, they are allowed to grow on their own, because as long as they have water and the necessary nutrients at the time of savoring them, we will know that they will be delicious. However, there are some varieties, such as Roman, that it is advisable to tie them about 5 or 6 days before taking them .
Why do you have to tie lettuce?
With the tie what is achieved is that the bud has a better development, at the same time that the parts that will be hidden from the sun are bleached . But if we are much more interested in the leaves than the bud, it is not important to do so.
The tying process is very simple: with a rope, or even with an elastic band, we will have to tie the leaves. We take them with our hands, as when we make a ponytail, and we pass the rope or the rubber band through the leaves . Once done, it will be enough to leave the plants like this for a few days.
Of course, it is very important that we know that if there is a forecast of rains, we cover them with, for example, plastic, since otherwise they could be damaged. Buckets can also serve us.
And with this we are done. Did you know why lettuce was tied? Have you ever done it? In any case, I hope this article has been useful to you. 🙂