An easy way of growing lettuce indoors is using hydroponics.
One of the reasons this vegetable gardening method works so well is because lettuce needs to retain moisture to grow successfully.
With hydroponics, the shallow roots of lettuce plants are kept evenly moist.
Many gardens experienced with this system recommend choosing the Ebb & Flow technique using Rockwood cubes for the best results.
For beginners, invest in indoor grow-lights and a timer. Four CFL lamps should be sufficient for a simple set-up.
As a "green" savings, choose an output equivalent to a 60W light bulb, although, the CFL lamp will only consume 15 W.
To simulate the sun, grow-lights need to be timed to operate for twelve hours off and twelve hours on.
Vegetable Gardening Tips for an Indoor Vegetable Garden
Choosing Containers for an Indoor Garden
Terracotta containers absorb water readily, which dries out the soil inside more rapidly than pots designed of other materials.
To counteract drying out the aoil medium, line plastic shopping bags inside of the containers, making holes in the bottom of the plastic lining for drainage.
Some gardeners suggest soaking the containers prior to planting so the pots do not take away vital moisture needed by young plants.
When using recycled pots, wash them out thoroughly with 9 parts water to one part bleach to kill any bacteria or fungus.
How to Grow Lettuce Indoors
When growing lettuce indoors in pots, don't bury seeds too deeply.
Plant seeds with thin coats need light to germinate.
Sow lettuce seed near the surface, so light will trigger germination.
If plants are overcrowded, heading lettuce won't head and lettuce plants may bolt. (Bolting is when the plant grows suddenly taller, and prepares to produce seed.)
When growing lettuce indoors, it is important to keep the plants properly ventilated as well to prevent the crop from bolting.
Harvesting Lettuce Grown Indoors
As your lettuce grows harvest either the entire plant or just the outer leaves and leave the inner ones to continue developing.
You can enjoy a continuous crop when growing lettuce indoors.
Vegetable Gardening Tips for Lettuce Leaves
Lettuce leaves are 95 percent water, and that is what makes them so crisp.
The water-heavy cells are tightly packed against each other, producing the crunchy texture.
For scientific reasons that are much too boring (my apologies to scientists everywhere) to go into having to do with osmosis, you can restore some crispness in limp lettuce leaves by simply submerging them in water.
Below we have included a delicious traditional French recipe that actually calls for wilted lettuce!
Green Beans and Wilted Lettuce Recipe
Boil and drain your beans.
Sauté some garlic and thinly sliced onions until they are soft.
Then add shredded lettuce in the skillet, after a minute or so, when the lettuce has wilted, add the beans.
"You can bury a lot of troubles digging in the dirt". ~ Anonymous