Flourishing in the Spotlight

Have you ever bought lettuce from the grocery store and thought, surely there’s an easier, cheaper, and more sustainable way to do this? Well that was me this past year. I got tired of spending money on those packages of lettuce that come in giant plastic shells that I then have to recycle. As a gardener, I decided it was only fitting that I find a better solution.

I resolved  to set up an indoor garden of my own. Turns out, growing lettuce is easy! You just need the right tools. I used grow lights ordered from Home Depot, a timer, and a shelving unit. Any type of lettuce seeds will do. I prefer to use a mix because I enjoy the variety of lettuce they render. Planting different types is also helpful because you can watch which ones grow best and then plan for the future. Also, be sure to succession sow. This means don’t plant all the seeds at once. Save half and wait about a month before you plant sow again. This way, you will have different sizes at different times.

Put the grow lights right over your pots to focus the light on the seeds.

Since growing lettuce, I have begun to use the same setup for other plants like cat grass (internal link) which can be used for your pets nutrition and well-being. However, I have found that lettuce is consistently the easiest to grow year round.

Here’s the timer I used.

This spring I have decided I am going to start germinating some seeds before putting them outside. Last year, I tried growing some Loofah plants from the seed but found that they take a very long time to germinate. So this year I am going to start growing them indoors.

Sometimes seed packages will tell you to start germinating inside for a few weeks before your last frost date. That’s where this indoor garden system can also come in handy. My area’s frost date is April 15th meaning that is the average date of the last freeze in spring. If a seed package says to sow them 6 weeks before the last frost date, that means I would plant them under my grow lights on March 1st. It really is all about timing!

Some of my salad bowls with assorted lettuce


Some of my salad bowls with assorted lettuce

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