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Author Topic: When do you harvest your lettuce?  (Read 1107 times)
TamiLynne
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« on: October 22, 2010, 10:38:45 PM »

So I've read the Tending and Harvesting Guide for Salad Greens, and it states that harvest can begin around 3 weeks. I'm now at day 17 & I can't decide if I should be picking off some leaves. Everything looks to be growing well, but I admit I'm unsure how large the leaves really will grow in the AG. Bear in mind I've never grown lettuce indoors or out, so I'm completely new to this! Although the leaves look large enough, they don't feel very "crisp".. is that normal? Should I be clipping leaves and setting in ice water like I would to "crisp up" bought lettuce or am I not letting them grow long enough (wouldn't be surprised  Roll Eyes  )

Here are some photos from today, for reference. There are 5 pods of the AG Salad Greens growing in a Classic 7 pod. I have not as of yet raised the hood.




Thanks in advance!

-Tami*
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« on: October 22, 2010, 10:38:45 PM »

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goodgal
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« Reply #1 on: October 23, 2010, 05:31:08 AM »

Beautiful lettuce!!!!!!!  I'd wait a few more days before I'd harvested any.  The lettuce is a little limpish, that's why I put them the fridge with a spritz of water.  Don't expect the crunch like iceberg lettuce.  Is this romaine?
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Sandi
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« Reply #2 on: October 23, 2010, 06:04:23 AM »

The first time I grew lettuce outside I noticed that it doesn't crisp and crunch like store bought lettuce. I've gotten so used to the way lettuce is supposed to be that I can't stand that store bought crisped lettuce. Hence why I'm growing lettuce in an aerogarden in the fall/winter.
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Kelly

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« Reply #3 on: October 23, 2010, 06:14:24 AM »

Tami, I wait until mine are a little bigger. My leaves got very large, and though they were not from an AG kit, I assume yours will still get a bit bigger. I don't think you'd HURT the plants to take a few now, but you may as well wait til you have a nice little crop.
I put mine in an ice water bath for about 15 minutes prior to eating, this helps hydrate them again after cutting and crisps them considerably. If you don't want them wet you can just refrigerate them and that will help some. This should give them about the same texture as the Organic Spring Mix you can buy in any grocery store (It usually comes in a large plastic tub). Most leaf lettuce like this is much more delicate and not nearly as crunchy as what we are used to seeing in commercial bagged mixes or what comes off of a head. They will not ever be as crunchy as Iceberg or even the large clusters of Romaine you can get in the store, but the taste will make up for it! Smiley
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goodgal
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« Reply #4 on: October 23, 2010, 06:17:16 AM »

That is true ladyerwyn, it is different.  Probably because we're eating it when it's young and tender.  Roll Eyes  I like to pinch off a few leaves and put it right on my sandwich!  It goes in fridge for awhile if it's for a side salad. Grin
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« Reply #5 on: October 23, 2010, 04:39:09 PM »

I think Sandi hit the nail on the head. Iíve grown lettuce for years (especially Romaine) and when I harvested early, the leaves were always tender and somewhat limp. Course I think thatís when the flavor is best too!

HL
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« Reply #6 on: October 24, 2010, 07:11:04 PM »

When my lettuce is about the size of yours, I start clipping off a few of the larger leaves to use on sadwiches.  About a week later, it's usually grown enough to start having a small side salad every day or two.. A week after tha, and one had better like having lettuce! 

AG lettuce is much more tender than the stuff you buy at the store.  Leaf lettuce in general isn't going to be crunchy like (>SHUDDER<) iceberg; and fresh-picked when it's young, it will be soft.  I've come to like it that way--to me, it's much more flavorful.
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Bobbie
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« Reply #7 on: October 24, 2010, 10:09:57 PM »

I agree Bobbie. The types of lettuce grown in the AG are loose leaf types and the never have time to sit in a field and mature like the store bought. If you look for the green loose and the red loose leaf lettuce you will get an idea of what you'll be getting. Since you will be continually munching on it, it will never get as big as what you see in the store. The flavor is outstanding!
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« Reply #8 on: October 25, 2010, 01:07:36 PM »

You can harvest at any time, really.
Just remember
- Don't take more than 1/3 of the leaves off any given plant at a time. (OK, I cheat and take 1/2.)
- The larger they are when you harvest them, the more lettuce you'll wind up with for the amount of work you've put in.
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« Reply #9 on: October 25, 2010, 01:28:58 PM »

- Don't take more than 1/3 of the leaves off any given plant at a time. (OK, I cheat and take 1/2.)

LOL - sometimes I've taken more than half.  Wink  But not when they're this young - it also takes a while for it to grow back again for a decent salad when you take a lot.
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TamiLynne
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« Reply #10 on: October 25, 2010, 02:51:27 PM »

Thanks everyone!  Grin

I've managed to hold out - but oh man is it starting to look droolworthy! Burgers tomorrow, I can't wait to find out how it tastes. Here it is, taking over the place:



-Tami*
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« Reply #11 on: October 25, 2010, 03:07:28 PM »

It looks great!  I'm surprised you've been able to resist.   Wink
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« Reply #12 on: October 25, 2010, 03:30:53 PM »

Yummy!!!!! Wink
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« Reply #13 on: October 25, 2010, 05:22:34 PM »

DEFINATELY ready to harvest!
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Bobbie
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« Reply #14 on: October 27, 2010, 09:03:35 AM »

Harvested the larger leaves last night to have on top of turkey burgers (we stuff our ground turkey chock full of AG herbs BTW - and they are amazing!) and I couldn't believe the flavor! I feel like all along I've added lettuce to a sandwich "for the texture" & I can officially say that's all the store-bought stuff has. This AG lettuce is killer! I cannot wait to have a whole salad!  Cheesy

.. oh and I almost forgot, my lizard likes it too. He had a few leaves for breakfast. Wink

-Tami*
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goodgal
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« Reply #15 on: October 27, 2010, 09:09:21 AM »

What herbs do you put in burgers?  also I bet you'll be sharing all your veggies with said lizard. Roll Eyes Roll Eyes What type is it....
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Sandi
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« Reply #16 on: October 27, 2010, 09:59:24 AM »

I'm glad the wait was worth it, Tami!  Grin
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« Reply #17 on: October 27, 2010, 03:24:49 PM »

Tami,

Is that your bearded dragon that you are sharing your lettuce with?  It is always nice to give our lizard buddies a little treat.  Glad you enjoyed your AG lettuce on your burgers.  Just think, any type of sandwich that you make can get a little bit of fresh lettuce now that you have your very own lettuce garden.
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« Reply #18 on: October 27, 2010, 06:47:57 PM »

Once one had fresh AG lettuce, the stroe bought stuff will never cut it again!
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Bobbie
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