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How to grow your own salad leaves

If you’ve ever been surprised by the cost of pre-washed salad leaves or felt guilty about throwing away bagged salad that’s gone off, it might be time to consider growing your own.

Getting started

Extremely easy to cultivate and quick growing, lettuce does well in a greenhouse, but it can also be grown successfully outside once temperatures rise in June, July and August.

You can cultivate seedlings in smaller pots before planting out, or sow directly into the ground or a grow bag. Sow seeds in rows at weekly or fortnightly intervals to give you a rolling supply and to avoid have too many lettuces all at once.

Lettuce is a cut and regrow crop, meaning that if you cut a few leaves from each plant but leave much of the plant intact, it will continue to grow new leaves for your salads. So, a little bit of regular watering, and you can sit back in your Outback reclining chair and literally watch your lunch grow!

Tasty and versatile varieties

Lamb’s lettuce has mild, oval leaves and is a great addition to a simple green salad. Rocket is perfect for giving your dishes a peppery punch and is used regularly in Italian recipes. Mizuna is a Japanese variety that is also peppery, but has a more subtle flavour.

Spinach is another great all-rounder – put young, tender leaves in a salad, or use the larger leaves in cooked dishes. A handful of spinach thrown into any pasta dish at the last minute sweats down in seconds and adds real depth of flavour.

Growing your own salad leaves is eco-friendly and cost effective, as well as tasty and satisfying.

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