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How to plant out lettuce


Plant out lettuce throughout the summer to ensure a continuous supply of salad. You can grow your own young plants from seed or buy them from nurseries and garden centres. Lettuce makes an ideal quick crop to grow between other vegetables before they mature, or at the front of flowerbeds and in pots.

How to do it


Water young lettuce plants an hour before planting. Knock them from their seed trays or pots, taking care not to damage the roots. Use a length of straight timber or string to keep them in line, where necessary.


Plant lettuce with a trowel ensuring that the top of the rootball is at the same level as the surrounding soil. Fill soil around the roots and firm it in position using the tips of your fingers.


Space plants 15cm - 30cm apart (check the label or seed packet for individual instructions). Plant in rows between other vegetables or in blocks. Water well after planting and at two-day intervals in dry weather.

Our tip

Planting out young lettuces gives better results in high summer because lettuce seed germinates poorly if sown directly into hot, dry soil.

Cover transplanted lettuce with horticultural fleece in cooler conditions, or shade netting in warmer months, for four to five days after planting to help them establish and reduce the risk of wilting.

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Talkback: How to plant out lettuce
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Tina`1783 24/11/2011 at 15:29

i was under the same impression that they could go straight out. Am confused.

By the way when you harvest the salad do you just trim it and it keeps growing like chives?

lucky10carol 24/11/2011 at 15:29

I thought you could sow lettuce straight in to the ground, when the earth has warmed up? which I have done, so do you think I should have sown them in the greenhouse?

dwarf 21/07/2014 at 15:37

i have just harvested my lettuse and 2 out of the 4 had slimey brown gunk on them , should i have put something underneeth the stop the lettuce getting into this state . hope you can help . THANK YOU x

Dovefromabove 21/07/2014 at 16:02

Is the gunk just on the outside leaves?  The outside leaves go on the compost heap.