Growing Lettuce

Jan F M A M J J A S O N Dec
P P P P P       P P P P

(Best months for growing Lettuce in New Zealand - cool/mountain regions)

P = Sow seed

  • Easy to grow. Sow in garden, or start in seed trays and plant out in 4-6 weeks.. Sow seed at a depth approximately three times the diameter of the seed. Best planted at soil temperatures between 46°F and 81°F. (Show °C/cm)
  • Space plants: 8 - 12 inches apart
  • Harvest in 8-12 weeks.
  • Compatible with (can grow beside): Carrots, Onions, Strawberries, Beets, Brassicas, Radish, Marigold, Borage, Chervil, Florence fennel, leeks.
  • Avoid growing close to: Parsley, Celery
  • Lettuce seedlings
  • Lettuce table-ready

Lettuce offer a range of shapes, sizes and colours but they are all easy to grow. Choose a variety marked on the seed packet as suitable for the time of year as some do badly in the very hot months. Try to provide some shade to prevent them 'bolting' to flower and seed in the hottest months.

Sow in rows and use thinnings as small salad greens

Lettuce are shallow rooted so water daily in hot or dry weather to prevent bitter flavour. and bolting.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Lettuce

Wash well, spin or shake dry and use in salads and sandwiches

Your comments and tips

22 Sep 21, Ana Maria (USA - Zone 10b climate)
Is Sept 25th to early to start fall Lettuce in my zone 10b? San Felipe, baja, north.
26 Sep 21, Chris (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Lettuce won't germinate if the soil temperature is too high, but if you can start them somewhere shady they might do ok.
29 Aug 21, David (Australia - cool/mountain climate)
Planning on planting tomato & lettuce together. Is this a good idea? Any advice would be appreciated.
01 Sep 21, (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Plant the lettuce on the northern side of the tomatoes or plant far enough away so that the tall tomatoes plants don't shade the lettuce. Lettuce need sunlight to fully grow.
17 Jun 21, Harry C Carter (USA - Zone 10a climate)
Can I grow red leaf lettuce in zone 10 A (Cape Coral Florida)?
21 Jun 21, Colleen (USA - Zone 10b climate)
Yes you can, but depending on how hot it gets where you are, you should choose a heat-tolerant variety or it will bolt too quickly. I recommend the red varieties of summer crisp Batavian lettuce. You should be able to get them at Swallowtail Gardens online if they haven't sold out for the season.
11 Jul 20, Valmai (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
I live on east coast and wondered whether it is a good idea to plant lettuce seeds and what type for summer 2020/2021?
13 Jul 20, (Australia - temperate climate)
The open leaf varieties. Cos, butter crunch, oak leaf etc. Lettuce seedlings take a lot of care to grow. Seeds need to to be very close to the surface to germinate, only a couple of mm of fine potting mix or seed raising mixture to cover them. Water with a sprayer or mister not with a hose. Water 2-3 times a day, keep the soil moist. Will need to grow them for 3-4 weeks before transplanting them.
30 Apr 20, Keith (South Africa - Summer rainfall climate)
Hi I punnet my lettuce but the turn colour the next day. They start getting brown especially when I cut my lettuce on a rainy day and pack them. What I'm i doing wrong ?
06 May 20, Anon (South Africa - Summer rainfall climate)
When you cut lettuce dry it out before putting in a bag and into the fridge. A spinning colander is best.
Showing 1 - 10 of 224 comments

Hi I punnet my lettuce but the turn colour the next day. They start getting brown especially when I cut my lettuce on a rainy day and pack them. What I'm i doing wrong ?

- Keith

Please provide your email address if you are hoping for a reply


All comments are reviewed before displaying on the site, so your posting will not appear immediately

Gardenate App

Put GardenGrow in your pocket. Get our app for iPhone, iPad or Android to add your own plants and record your plantings and harvests

Planting Reminders

Join our 60,000+ gardeners who already use GardenGrow and subscribe to the free GardenGrow planting reminders email newsletter.


Home | Vegetables and herbs to plant | Climate zones | About GardenGrow | Contact us | Privacy Policy

This planting guide is a general reference intended for home gardeners. We recommend that you take into account your local conditions in making planting decisions. GardenGrow is not a farming or commercial advisory service. For specific advice, please contact your local plant suppliers, gardening groups, or agricultural department. The information on this site is presented in good faith, but we take no responsibility as to the accuracy of the information provided.
We cannot help if you are overrun by giant slugs.