Lettuces from seed
You will need :
• A shallow container (you could recycle a tomato punnet from the supermarket)
• Black Magic seed raising mix
• Labels and a pencil
• Spray bottle for water (an old bathroom cleaner spray bottle is fine but be sure to clean it out first!)
1 Fill your container with seed raising mix, press down gently and make a smooth even surface.
2 Water gently and leave to drain.
3 Write out labels for each type of lettuce you are going to sow.
4 Sprinkle seeds over the seed raising mix.
5 Lightly cover seeds with a very fine layer of mix. Note: Little seeds like lettuce barely need covering.
6 Water the seeds using a fine mist spray bottle and place them in a warm, sheltered spot.
7 Spray with water when the surface starts to look a little dry, keeping the mix moist but not soaking wet.
8 When the second set of leaves appears, transplant your seedlings (or pull some out) to give them more space to grow. Note: The very first leaves are called ‘cotyledons’. They’re not actual leaves, but parts of the seed. The ‘true’ leaves come next.
9 When your seedlings are growing strongly and there are no more frosts, you can plant them out into the garden. But before you do, it’s a good idea to get them used to the cold by moving them to a cool spot with only half-day sun. This is called ‘hardening off’.
Covering seeds with newspaper and plastic wrap helps protect them from drying out. Check every day and remove the cover once they germinate.