The Content Of The Article:
- Location and care
- Cultivation in planters
- Types and varieties
- Diseases and pests
- End with nibbled salad: Three tips against snails
No salad is as fresh as that from your own garden - and cultivation is easy. If you would like to harvest salad in spring, sowing in a cold frame or in pans on the windowsill is recommended. The advantages over direct sowing: They save seed and the cultivation time on the bed is shortened. In the cold frame, you can advance the sowing by a few weeks, but you must make absolutely sure that the soil is sufficiently dried and no longer sticks and smears.
In late spring and summer, direct sowing in the bed with subsequent separation is recommended. If sown directly into the bed, most salad varieties are less prone to "shooting", ie premature flowering, because they develop a deep root system and better access to the water resources in the soil. Another advantage: The lettuce plants need less watering.
Salad is a light germ. Therefore, you should only sift the seeds very thinly with sand. The optimum germination temperature is dependent on the variety, but in many varieties, at temperatures above 20 degrees Celsius, germination occurs. If the temperature is below the optimum germination temperature, it will take a little longer for the seed to rise. Most regions can be sown outdoors from late March / early April. If you want to harvest fresh lettuce throughout the summer, just sow every 14 days until September. Shading of the seedbed is recommended in the summer so that the soil does not heat up too much.
Summer salads provide variety on the bed and are in great demand in summer. So that enough heads are ready for harvest, they sow again when the previously sown plants form first leaves
Advanced seedlings give you a harvest advantage of four weeks. Seed in pot plates with four to five centimeter single pots and harden the salads in a sheltered place before planting. The correct planting distances depend on the type of salad. A plant scale measuring scale prevents salads from being set too low. Ideal is a planting depth of four to five centimeters, so that the root are just above the ground. If the salad is too deep and the vegetation cone is too far below the ground, the leaves can not develop properly and are susceptible to disease. In the picture gallery below you will find special cultivation instructions for the different types of lettuce. Tip: Anyone who plants purchased seedlings should have the earth pots half out of the ground.
The bales of the lettuce seedlings should look out about half of the soil when planting
Location and care
Salad does not have high demands on the soil, but it does not like sour soils and sludge-prone heavy soils. On light sandy soils, you need to water well, but these soils warm up faster in the spring and you can harvest earlier. Ideally, sow or plant your lettuce in a deeply loosened soil that is humus rich and low in nitrogen. In spring, you should give the lettuce the sunniest bed, in the summer culture, he feels at a cooler place more comfortable. Both the garden lettuce (Lactuca sativa) and the Zichoriensalate (Cichorium intybus) should be grown on the same area only with a four-year break. A pre-culture with leeks, spinach or onions as well as a green manure are recommended.
Salad must be watered regularly, otherwise the leaves will harden, the plants grow slowly and tend to shoot. When the salad becomes firmer and the heads begin to close, you should pour less and more carefully, preferably not over the heads, but directly onto the surface of the earth. On good garden soil, you do not need to fertilize the salad. In addition, you should definitely not spread manure before cultivation, because that promotes rot. If you mulch the soil, it will be weed-free and moist. If you do not mulch, you have to hack regularly to reduce evaporation.
Cultivation in planters
Many types of lettuce can be grown well in pots, bowls and balcony boxes. The substrate used must not be too rich in nutrients. Mix two parts of humus-rich garden soil with one part of sand or use a special vegetable soil from the specialized trade. Pickling salads such as Lollo Rosso or Lollo Bionda are particularly suitable. The trade has also been offering the so-called baby-leaf salads for some time now. These are salads that do not form a head, are sown densely and already harvested in "babyhood" (cut length six to eight centimeters). For example, leek lettuce, radicchio in red and green, colorful salads, as well as young spinach and chard are suitable as a baby leaf salad.
Herbs and lettuce thrive in the pot as well as in the bed
The balcony cultivation of baby leaf salads is particularly easy with seed plates from the garden trade. You can also make these seed plates yourself: sprinkle a lightly moistened piece of kitchen paper tightly with lettuce seeds, place another sheet on top and press firmly. Now place the "salad sandwich" in a shallow dish with substrate, press down and pour gently. Always keep the bowl moist. After about three weeks you can harvest the leaves with scissors.
Types and varieties
Depending on the season, only certain species and varieties come into question for the salad culture. So many breeds are only suitable for spring cultivation. For example, many lettuce species go into the flower too late to sow without forming beautiful heads.
The absolute favorite in the vegetable garden: lettuce (Lactuca sativa var. Capitata)
The leaves then taste bitter and are quite tough. Lettuce is now high on the wish list. Particularly popular are so-called butter salads such as 'may king' or 'Rolando' with a delicate bite and mild-aromatic taste. Eichblatt- or Kraussalate develop instead of solid heads only loose rosettes. If one picks the outer leaves continuously as needed, the harvest can be extended over six weeks. Dress salad has long been a typical spring crop and varieties such as 'Yellow Cut' are still popular today. In the meantime, colorful seed mixtures expand the salad pallet for beds and window boxes all year round. Batavia and ice lettuce are closely related and have no heat stress. Also because of the refreshingly juicy and crispy leaves they are ideal as a summer salad! Romana and endive complete the offer in high and late summer and extend the salad year with its mildly nutty to slightly bitter leaves until autumn.
Start photo gallery
Healthy salad variety
Chicory is a biennial plant that is descended from the Common Chicory (Cichorium intybus). In the first year, the Chicorèe forms a leaf rosette of dandelion-like leaves and a thick taproot. In the second year, a bud-like shoot develops from the root, from which the firm white buds emerge by pushing without light. Sowing in the field takes place from mid-May to early June, after germination is thinned out. Water and chop the plants regularly until the leaf rosettes cover the soil. In October / November carefully dig out the roots with the grave fork. Cut the leaves back to two to three centimeters, the heart of the plants must not be injured. Leave the roots on the bed to dry on the bed and then store as cool as possible. They can be powered from November to March. Tip: Here you can read how the bustle of Chicorèe works
Also radicchio Like the closely related chicory, it comes from the common chicory (Cichorium intybus). The biennial plant is usually cultivated in the vegetable garden once a year. Radicchio forms a strong tap root in the first year and, depending on the variety, a more or less thick leaf rosette, from which at first a looser head develops at harvest time. In addition to these head-forming Radicchio, there are also rosette-forming forms and the dandelion-leaf chicory. One differentiates between early and late radicchio varieties. Sow early varieties from late May to mid-July and harvest in summer and autumn. Late varieties are sown at the beginning of July. The sowing takes place in rows directly into the field. Harvest is about twelve weeks after sowing. For overwintering varieties, cut the leaves down to a three to four centimeters long stem - in the spring, the plant then drives out again. It is recommended to cover the plants with fleece and brushwood in winter
Of the Sugarloaf is also one of the chicory salads. It forms quite strong cylindrical heads that can weigh up to two kilograms. Many sugarloaf varieties tend to shoot, so the sowing takes place from the end of June to mid-July. Meanwhile, varieties are also commercially available, which are more resistant to bullets and can be sown from the end of March. Seed in rows with 35 centimeters distance directly into the field. The seedlings are then separated later on 35 to 40 centimeters. From October, the heads can be cut off directly above the ground. In mild areas, the sugarloaf with light winter protection can stay on the bed all winter long and does not need to be stored
at endive one distinguishes three forms: the broad-leaved endive / Escariol, the Krause winter endive / Frisee endive and the cut endive. Endives thrive best in late summer and fall, but can also be grown as spring crops. Cut endives, also called summer endives due to their seasonal use, are sown in rows 20 centimeters from the end of March to the end of June. After about four weeks can be harvested and even several times. The broad-leaved endive is sown from mid-June to late July in pre-culture or directly into the bed.The frisé endive can be sown in pre-culture from mid-March and, if temperatures permit, it can also be taken directly into the field (minimum temperature for germination 16 degrees Celsius). The nursery cultivation lasts about four weeks for the broadleaf endive and the frisé endive. Then it is planted out on 30 x 30 to 35 x 40 centimeters. Frisee types can be tighter than the broadleaf types. Harvested when the plants show a well-formed rosette with heart filling. The first crops are usually possible from mid-September to mid-October. In mild regions can still be harvested in December. If the temperatures fall below -5 degrees Celsius, you have to harvest the endives and store them in a cool and frost-free place
Of the Romaine lettuce (Roman salad, bind salad) is a culture of garden salad (Lactuca sativa). Its leaves are oval, stand upright and have a strong midrib. Depending on the variety, they are colored green or brown-red. Mostly, the salad closes by itself to a relaxed mind. Romana salads are very bulletproof, so they are also good for summer growing in warm regions. Older varieties remain hollow inside and are open at the top, so they had to be tied together - hence the name Bindesalat. Romana salad can be pre-cultivated under glass (February to March) and then planted in April / May. From April to July, sowing directly into the field is also possible. The row spacing should be 30 centimeters. After germination is later isolated within the row on 35 centimeters. Six to eight weeks after planting and eight to ten weeks after direct sowing, you can harvest the salad
Of the lettuce (Butter salad) is probably the best known variety of garden salad (Lactuca sativa). It forms a closed head with tender, soft leaves, which are green to red, smooth or curly depending on the variety. Depending on the variety, lettuce is sown on the windowsill or in the warm cold frame from the end of February. Once the cotyledons have developed, the seedlings must be poked into small pots. From the beginning of March to the beginning of April, you can plant the young plants either in the cold frame, under foil or directly in the field (planting distance 30 x 30 centimeters). Lettuce should always be planted high, that is, the root collar must not be covered with soil. From the end of April to the end of July, you can also sow the salad directly into the field and later on separate 30 x 30 centimeters. Because the high temperatures usually lead to germ inhibition in the summer, you should sow as often as possible in the evening or in the morning and overflow the seed with cold water. Depending on the variety, you can harvest the lettuce eight to ten weeks after sowing
Iceberg lettuce (Iceberg salad, crash salad) is also one of the garden salads (Lactuca sativa). He has a firmer, crisper leaf than the lettuce and less prone to shooting. Depending on the variety, you can sow and plant ice lettuce from spring to late summer. From March, it can be pre-cultivated on the windowsill, under glass or outdoors under foil. Once the cotyledons have unfolded is piqued. From the fifth leaf you can plant the young plants at a distance of 30 x 35 centimeters. Direct sowing outdoors (May to the end of June) is also possible, but is rarely practiced. Ice lettuce is ready for harvest eleven to twelve weeks after sowing, and the Batavia salads, which are also part of the ice salads, are ready for use within eight weeks
Other forms of culture of the garden salad are the Picking and cut lettuce, They do not form a head but loose leaf rosettes. Pickling salad can be harvested by the leaves for a long time. Dress salads are fast growing and unlike pickle salads are harvested whole and only once. Even pickles and slices are cultivated similar to lettuce. From January you can prefer them under glass, from March into the cold frame or under foil and from the beginning of April directly into the field. Sow the pickle salad at a row distance of 25 to 30 centimeters and separate it after emergence to about ten centimeters. Schnittsalat can also be sown in rows but also breitwürfig. Since it is usually harvested quickly, it does not have to be thinned. Harvesting takes about six to seven weeks after sowing. Pick the leaves of the pickle salad from the outside in, the youngest leaves, the heart, must stop to regrow. But if you cut them off briefly, so that the heart leaves remain, so about three to four inches high, you can also harvest cut lettuce several times
Diseases and pests
High humidity or days of heavy rainfall can cause downy mildew. In order to prevent spread, it is important to dispose of the affected plants. In addition, you can still sprinkle the salad with self-made Horsetail. Since there are now numerous varieties in the trade, which are resistant to certain fungal diseases and pests, one should buy in advance only powdery mildew breeds.
In the field, the lettuce harvest is threatened above all by voracious snails.Therefore, you should spread immediately after planting directly around the young plants slug pellets according to the package instructions. Other effective measures for snail defense are, for example, salad lollies made of plastic or snail fences.
End with nibbled salad: Three tips against snails
In this video we show you what really helps to curb the annual snail plague in the garden.