harvesting lettuce

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I have over a dozen heads of Iceberg Lettuce with about half having formed a head. Now that temperatures seemed to have settled in the eighties and sometimes nineties here in NYC should I start harvesting? I read that sometimes the lettuce can get bitter?
Thanks, Rob
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Emmet Cummings wrote:

Yes. In the high heat the lettuce will 'bolt' (put up a seed stalk) and turn bitter. Moreover, the stalk will come right up through the center of the head and possibly ruin it for other purposes.
Bill
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On Fri, 04 Jul 2003 00:41:58 -0400, Noydb

This is a little late, but there's an argument for planting leaf lettuce, since one can peel off the outside leaves for the table repeatedly w/o having to pull up the plant.
Dunno if leaf lettuce would "bolt" as fast as iceberg, but it's for sure much more nutritious; the darker the better.
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On Fri, 04 Jul 2003 23:12:12 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@Underworld.com wrote:

It also tastes much better (IMHO), and grows much faster.
I've read that leaf lettuce does not bolt as fast as iceberg, but most of mine has certainly bolted now. It's been pretty hot the last two weeks.
I'll start seeds for more in a day or so, and grow it in pots on the deck - I can drag them into shade on very hot days.
Pat
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Well, I'm sure my palate has room for expansion; however, I do like the crunchiness of the iceberg variety.

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Emmet Cummings wrote:

Life begins with a salad of early spinach, dandelion greens, chives and young onions. Add a dollop of Caeser dressing and prepare to shame the rabbits.
Then too, there's a lot to be said for what is sometimes called "Wilted lettuce" salad ... black seeded simpson tossed in a bowl with some thinly sliced onions, a splash of red wine vinegar, crumbled freshly cooked bacon, an optional pinch of granulated sugar and the hot grease off the bacon.
The missus and I (she's from Brooklyn,NY by way of connection)have been raiding the mesclun mix greens almost daily for a simple salad of just greens and a dressing of some sort.
Michigan winters can be the pits ... but summers are the peaks!
Bill
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On Sat, 05 Jul 2003 18:12:15 -0400, Noydb

Sounds good, except the "wilted" part avec hot grease.
I make a salad with many of the same ingredients, except that I pick a lemon off the tree and squeeze it instead of the vinegar. For an interesting contrast, toss with orange slices cut small.
Instead of the sliced onions, I sometimes go out back and pull some green onions, but the sliced does give a more robust taste.
As to salad oil, I switched from olive to walnut years ago. More delicate flavour.
I have never understood the optional sugar bit. What is the purpose?
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Emmet Cummings wrote:

of 4 legged meat, so the bacon grease is an affordable luxury. This salad is a family recipe which, due to the dearth of black seeded simpson lettuce in the commercial markets, is a privelege restricted to only those who have the foresight to plant their own garden. :-)
Mesclun mix is a mixture of lettuces and European salad greens (cilantro, for example) that grow well together and provide a 'ready mixed' salad right out of the garden. There must be eight or ten varieties in it but I only recognize a few ... oak leaf lettuce, some sort of bibb lettuce and the afore-mentioned cilantro.
Bill
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On Thu, 10 Jul 2003 03:34:49 GMT, "Emmet Cummings"

I don't think there's any set formula for mesclun mix.
I bought seeds called 'mesclun mix' from Pinetree Garden Seeds, but they're just several types of lettuce.
Other greens for possible inclusion would be mizuna, raddicchio, chicory, curly endive, arugala, other Asian greens especially when young. I'm growing a Japanese plant called Vitaminna that would be a good thing for adding to a mesclun mix, for example.
Edible flowers would be nice too.
I've never been certain if arugala and raddicchio are the same thing or different. Anyone know?
Pat
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snipped-for-privacy@meadows.pair.com says...

year and liked them.
And orach (both green and red) has been a salad staple at our house for years.
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On Thu, 10 Jul 2003 09:08:58 -0700, Larry Blanchard

I've never grown orach but intend to try it next year.
This year, for an exotic spinach, I am growing Malabar Spinach. It's been growing well since our cool spring monsoon weather turned into hot summer weather.
But I find that I do not like it, I don't like the taste or the texture. So I won't grow it again.
Pat
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snipped-for-privacy@meadows.pair.com says...

either of us likes. This year I tried Good King Henry (or Lincolnshire spinach) and it may have some possibilities if I can get it to germinate. I planted several seeds in each of several starter pots and only had one plant come up. But since it's a perennial, I thought I'd bury some seeds this fall and see if overwintering is what they want.
Also tried perpetual spinach, a fine leafed chard - don't like it.
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On Fri, 11 Jul 2003 14:24:28 -0700, Larry Blanchard

I love chard - just regular Swiss chard. I prefer the green kind (Fordhook Giant is the one I generally grow). I think it's better than spinach. I also think beet greens are better than spinach. So I'm not really stuck for a spinach substitute. Chard has always grown VERY well for me, never any problems with it.
But I'll definitely also try Good King Henry: who could resist growing a plant with a name like that? :) Not me.
Pat
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snipped-for-privacy@meadows.pair.com says...

commercially in Britain. The only place I've seen it is Bountiful Gardens, and they say they've had trouble germinating it.
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Emmet Cummings said:

'loose head' varieties. They have many of the advantages of leaf lettuces (including having more nutritional value), but have a texture more like iceberg.
'Sierra' and 'Nevada' are widely available. (May I recommend Pinetree Garden Seeds as a mail-order source: http://www.superseeds.com -- look in the French vegetables section.)
Cos or romaine lettuces have a little more substance and crunch than most leaf lettuces and are also far more nutritious than iceberg.
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Pat in Plymouth MI

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says...

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I threw down some mulch and give it a good soaking each morning. In NYC the air is fairly moist from the humidity. However, as I write this the temperature is in the mid-nineties, so I guess I'll be pulling those heads up today.
I liked the website -- its got 52 varieties of lettuce; some looks like weeds I've pulled up in the past.

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Emmet Cummings wrote:

I -used- to mow the tall dandelions in the alley. Never again!
Bill
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I don't think I'm quite ready to begin foraging for dandelions yet!
Rob
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On Sun, 06 Jul 2003 17:02:23 GMT, "Emmet Cummings"

I wouldn't need to forage very far: our own yard supplies lots of them! :)
Pat
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