How Deep To Plant Lettuce- The Ideal Planting Depth

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Last Updated on April 1, 2022

One of the most widely planted vegetables commonly grown in the US is usually lettuce. They are so easy to grow and you don’t need the experience to grow them. How deep to plant lettuce is what this article will give you information on.

Lettuce is a cool-season crop so they flourish well during spring and fall. Lettuce seeds are easily sown directly into the soil as soon as the ground soil can be worked on.

It may please you to know that lettuce grows rapidly and it can take only a month from seed planting for baby greens to be harvested. So, you can just add lettuce to your vegetable garden as you will be enjoying lettuce and even save some money instead of going to the grocery store to shop for lettuce.

How deep to plant lettuce is the information you will get here. So, let’s get some details on the ideal lettuce planting depth.

How Deep To Plant Lettuce

The dept that is ideal to plant lettuce seed is around 1/8 to ¼ of an inch deep. It is important you don’t sow lettuce seeds too deep. This is because lettuce seed requires light to germinate so, if the seed is too deep, light may not penetrate the seeds and this may lead to unsuccessful lettuce seed germination. Also, make sure you sow the seeds of lettuce when the soil is not frozen.

Additionally, to successfully sow lettuce seed, you will need a well-tilled seedbed. Note that stones and large clods of dirt can slow down seed germination. So ensure the seedbed is clear of any obstacles such as these.

How Deep To Plant Lettuce

Starting Lettuce Seeds – How Deep To Plant Lettuce

You can start your lettuce seeds either indoors and then transplant or sow them directly in the garden. How deep to sow your lettuce seeds should be 5mm (1/4”). Or you can plant them where there will be all-around moisture in the soil which is the topmost layer of the soil.

Because the baby lettuce is usually ready for harvesting while it’s immature, it should be planted densely. Unlike other types of lettuce seeds that don’t really need covering as they are usually planted right at the surface, you should plant pelleted seeds 1cm (1/2”) deep.

Your pelleted seeds need to be all-around moist when planted newly. Water it more than the way you would have watered the conventional seed variety. However, leaving the soil to dry out will only make the pelleting material suck water from and cause dehydration for the seed.

This is because the pellet material is clay. This action will lead to a more unpleasant situation which is unequal or lower sprouting. So, give space between thin loose leaf varieties to about 20-25cm.

As for the heading lettuce varieties, give space of about 30cm between them. Give space of about 45-90cm between rows, for all types of varieties. Also, harvesting can be made easier if baby leaf lettuce seeds are planted by each other in rows that are narrow.

Tips On Growing Lettuce

The best soil to grow lettuce in is the type that is well-draining and also high in organic matter. Ideally, the soil pH for growing lettuce must be between 6.0-6.5.

Before planting your lettuce, say 3 weeks, endeavor to mix compost and lime into the soil. Once it’s 2 or 3 days to transplanting, reduce watering and also move your lettuce plants outdoors.

This will help harden off the seedlings before transplanting and it will prevent shock transplant. So, this way premature bolting and transplant shock can be avoided.

While you’re growing lettuce, you should be aware of some growing requirements for a smooth growth. Here are some more tips to help you with growing lettuce.

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  • Water Appropriately – How Deep To Plant Lettuce

Watering lettuce has to be done in an intentional way that will encourage more leaf growth so you can have the “cut and come again.” So, watering should be light, consistent, and frequent. Aim for a moist soil and avoid soggy soil.

Again, you can just supply the roots of lettuce water and also splash cool water on the leaves, especially during hot days. This is to maintain a happy and refreshed lettuce during hot days.

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  • Soil – How Deep To Plant Lettuce

The soil you will be using to grow lettuce must be well0drianing. This is so water doesn’t soak up in the root.

  • Cover Or Shade Lettuce When Needed

During the hot season, you can use row covers to shade the leaves. You can also mulch to maintain a cool root.

Read more about Do Pepper Plants Grow Back Every Year?

Growing Lettuce In Container – How Deep To Plant Lettuce

Lettuce can also be planted in containers easily and you can either do this by direct sowing or transplanting.

To sow lettuce seed in containers, choose a good soil and before planting, make sure you add half a tablespoon of time-releasing fertilizer per gallon of soil.

If you will be transplanting lettuce in containers, bury the transplant quarter inch or 0.5 cm deep than they would have been in an outdoor garden. Then ensure the spacing is about 6 to 12 inches apart. However, you can plant lettuce leaf a bit closer than the head type.

Also, the type of lettuce variety you choose for container growing can go a long way. For instance, some recommended varieties are the Black Seeded Thompson and red or green oak leaf types.

Loose-leaf lettuce varieties are better used for container growing rather than head lettuce.

Growing Lettuce In Container

How Deep To Plant Lettuce: Final Say

So, we have seen the ideal depth to plant lettuce from the explanation above. So, lettuce doesn’t need to be planted too deep so they can have access to light as it is crucial for their seed to develop.


How shallow can you plant lettuce?

Lettuce does not need to be planted too deep because their seeds need to reach out to the light to germinate properly. So, plant lettuce seed about a quarter to half inch deep.

Can you plant lettuce too deep?

It is not ideal to plant lettuce seeds too deep. This can hinder the seeds from getting access to light which they need to properly germinate. If they are planted too deep, it may result in weak and feeble seedlings. Planting lettuce too deep may even fail to germinate.

How deep to plant lettuce seeds?

Ideally, the seeds of lettuce should be planted about half an inch deep to a quarter inch deep. This implies that lettuce seeds do well in shallow spots.

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