gardening weather

A little summer heat is appearing in the Sunshine State.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-12-30/heatwave-declared-in-parts-of-queensland/5179018
The town of Miles QLD hit over 48C (119F). Note this is *not* in the desert, it is on the downs where the industries are cropping and grazing.
So close to the summer solstice at that latitude the sun would be overhead at noon.
How would your lettuce be holding up?
David
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David Hare-Scott wrote:

This is confusing, in one place it says Miles reached 48.3C in another 43.8C. I suspect the lower figure is correct, still fairly warm at 111F.
D
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On 12/30/2013 5:29 PM, David Hare-Scott wrote:

I had an acquaintance in Las Vegas, Nevada where the temperatures are like that. She grew all sorts of fancy salad greens but only by dint of elaborate shade and wind-blocking structures and an automatic misting system. Far too much work for me -- I grew cacti instead.
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David Hare-Scott wrote: ...

bolting for the sky or getting bitter and tough?
i'm actually very little experienced with lettuces here so i'm curious as to how to grow good lettuce (especially romaine). we have a variety of gardens to pick from with different soils, but i suspect one which is inside the fenced garden will be critical with the critter populations...
how to keep it from getting bitter? does it like mulch? soil conditions? pH? amendments? in most cases i won't be able to do much but for a small garden i can usually make an exception.
moisture level? constant? somewhat moist? medium? somewhat dry?
sluggos and snailses usually aren't a horrible problem here.
songbird
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songbird wrote:

Or just wilting and not growing.

I recommend constant somewhat moist conditions including heavy mulch. I have not found that pH or the exact nutrient balance makes any difference but moderately fertile soil that keeps growth going steadily is best. I give up on lettuce during our hot months as with all the mulch and watering they still bolt. Perhaps I should be experimenting with shade cloth too. If anybody had a good article on why exactly they bolt I am interested. It seems to be related to soil temperature more than air temperature but I am not certain.
D
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David Hare-Scott wrote:

that too.

are you direct seeding or sprouting separately and then putting the plants out after they've grown a bit?
i have plenty of soil of that type, to protect from critters most of it is also in the fenced gardens so that will help.
mulch is sometimes harder to come by at the right times as i rely upon someone else for that and store very little of it. it gets used up quickly with as many gardens as we have.

i'm not certain either, but it is what the plant must do to set seed for the next generation. i think one approach to leafy greens in general to avoid all of them bolting at the same general time is to plant biannuals like some of the chards, leafy cabbages, etc. it's not lettuce exactly, but it is close enough.
for my own enjoyment i'm hoping to find some leafy cabbage like plants that i can just pick and eat as i'm out in the gardens. that way i avoid the primary complaint of Ma that she doesn't want the smell of them cooking and i like them raw well enough too so that will be another approach this year for me to get more greens going here. perhaps bok choi and some of the others will work too. worth a try that is for sure. :)
songbird
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