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How to sow lettuce seeds in guttering

You will need

  • Seeds of mixed lettuce leaves
  • Plastic guttering
  • Fine-tooth tenon saw or hacksaw
  • Multi-purpose compost
  • Watering can
Do it: March - August
At its best: harvest from April to September
Takes just: 20 minutes


You can never have enough lettuce in summer, but sowing directly into the soil takes up valuable space in the garden. Keep a regular supply growing by sowing seeds in lengths of plastic guttering: short, 1m lengths are convenient and easy to handle. Fill with moist multipurpose compost. When the lettuce seeds germinate, you can grow them on for two to four weeks and then simply slide the plants into their growing positions as soon as space becomes available.

How to do it

Sowing lettuce seed into compost in guttering

1Sprinkle a pinch of your salad seed along the length of the compost-filled guttering and lightly cover the seed with a thin layer of compost.

Watering compost in guttering with watering can

2Water the compost carefully and put the guttering in a greenhouse, cold frame or on a windowsill. The seeds should germinate after about a week and can be grown on for two to four weeks depending on the variety and time of year, before planting out.

Sliding lettuce seedlings from guttering into prepared soil

3Your salad leaf seedlings will be ready to transplant when their roots fill the compost in the guttering. Use a garden trowel to make a wide, shallow drill in prepared soil and slide the seedlings in place. Water them in thoroughly.

Adam's tip

Water the young lettuce plants in the guttering before sliding them out into their final position. This reduces damage to their roots.
Sow more seeds at two-week intervals to provide a continuous supply of leaves for salads.

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Talkback: How to sow lettuce seeds in guttering
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petethecoach 24/11/2011 at 15:28

dear sir, this year we have broad leaf grass growing in patches in our lawn. the mower has problems cutting these clumps and makes our lawn look terrible. i've tried weed and feed to no avail any ideas please yours faithfully p. hanreck

jasonbenali 24/11/2011 at 15:28

Nice idea. My lettuces are taking over!

gardendadrob 24/11/2011 at 15:28

great info as i am growing these first time this year and did not know how to do it but this is a simple way