I planted lettuce in the fall of last year. I live in Tennessee. It
never really grew. We had a cold winter, got snow,frost, etc. Now
it's spring and the lettuce is now doing great. A few spots, but
looks great for the most part. Is it still safe to eat?
There is nothing inherently wrong with old lettuce that has grown slowly
other than it could be bitter to taste. This bitterness is not harmful just
unpleasant. Lettuce and other salad vegetables get to be dangerous due to
unsafe handling practices where they are contaminated with fecal coliforms.
This is most often during preparation. If you observe normal food handling
precautions and wash it in clean water there should be no problem. If the
spots are unsightly trim them out.
As long as you didn't spray fertilizer or contaminate the ground around
the lettuce, you should be fine. Like others said, just make sure to
wash the lettuce and any vegetables and fruits you harvest from your
garden to prevent from getting sick. You might want to taste one leaf
before preparing it all to make sure it tastes good and isn't bitter.
Hire a taster like the kings of yore used to do. They had so many people
who were aspiring to the throne, that they would hire people to eat some
food, and in an hour or two, if they were alive, the King and Queen would
Damn, cold pizza and Brussels sprouts every night. It must have been dull,
but then, those cold drafty castles were so dull, it's surprising there were
any princes or princesses. And Brussels sprouts farts seriously limits
anyone's personal life even today, particularly under a duvet.
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