Lettuce is one of the best things to grow in an AeroGarden. It grows super fast and thus provides near immediate gratification. But when it comes to growing AeroGarden lettuce, which varieties are best? And exactly what can you expect when growing lettuce in your AeroGarden?
Growing AeroGarden Lettuce, Step-by-Step
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In this article, I’ll walk you through the process of Growing AeroGarden Lettuce. I include photos so you’ll know exactly what to expect at various stages in the process.
Note that I typically take a more DIY approach with my AeroGardens, by purchasing sponges and seeds separately. So, I have a whole big stash of AeroGarden lettuce pods that have piled up over time. Because of that, note that some of the lettuce pods that I used were at least a couple of years old. We’ll find out how well they work!
Day 0 – Setting Up the Lettuce Pods in My AeroGarden
I dug through my stash of AeroGarden lettuce pods and selected the varieties pictured below.
Though not to scale, this image above is a “map” of what I planted in the different grow pods in an AeroGarden Harvest (Amazon).
I first added water to the fill line and put in two small capfuls of AeroGarden nutrients. I used the nutrients that came with the AeroGarden. If you don’t have any of the small bottles of nutrients, then you can purchase the nutrients online.
The most economical size of AeroGarden nutrients is the 1-liter jug (available here, on Amazon.)
After adding nutrients to the water, and placing the lettuce grow pods in the Garden, I placed domes over each pod. The domes help to hold in moisture and create a greenhouse-like effect. You only need to use them until the seedlings grow up near the top of the domes.
Day 7 of Growing Lettuce in an AeroGarden
By the seventh day, all the lettuce seeds had germinated. As you can see in the image above, the Rouge d’Hiver did quite well. Some of the others, including Deer Tongue and Red Sails had germinated, but were way behind the others.
While I can’t be sure of the reason for the two getting off to a slow start, it’s interesting to note that they were both on the far right side of the garden. It’s possible that position doesn’t get as much light. It’s also possible that those varieties grow slower than the other varieties.
Growing AeroGarden Lettuce, Day 14
In the image above, you can see what the lettuce looks like after 14 days of growing in an AeroGarden. Note that the ones on the right are still not doing well. They are alive, but I believe that the growth is slower either because the varieties grow slower, or because that position doesn’t get as much light OR, they were being shaded by the Marvel of 4 Seasons lettuce growing just to the left of them.
At this point the Marvel of 4 Seasons lettuce was about 2 inches tall.
I added 2 capfuls of nutrients from the small bottle of AeroGarden nutrients. If you’re using the nutrients from the 1-liter bottle, add 4 ml of nutrients in a Harvest.
Pro tip: I recommend saving the small nutrient bottles that come with any AeroGarden garden or seed kit order. To save money, buy the 1-liter bottles of AeroGarden nutrients on Amazon. Then refill the small bottles. I’ve chosen this approach because the 1 liter bottle is a cheaper way to go, but the small bottles are easier to handle. Plus, it’s easy to measure out the nutrients using the cap on the small bottle.
AeroGarden Lettuce, Day 22
Once lettuce starts growing in an AeroGarden, it really takes off! This is what makes growing lettuce in an AeroGarden so much fun, especially for children, new gardeners, or people who thrive on instant gratification. 🙂
By this point, the lettuce was six inches tall, and I decided to do my first little harvest. I used scissors to cut about three inches off the top. People often refer to this method of harvesting lettuce as giving the lettuce a “haircut.”
Here’s what the lettuce looked like after I cut about three inches off the top.
Ideally, you’ll never cut more than 1/3 of the lettuce off. I did closer to a half, which at least in my experience, works fine. However, with smaller plants you should avoid cutting off more than 1/3.
One of the great things about growing lettuce is that you can harvest some, and it grows back. The nice thing about this is that you can typically keep growing and harvesting from the same lettuce plant for a few months. It’s like free food. 🙂
AeroGarden Lettuce, Day 28
Remember when I said that even if you harvest half of the lettuce, it will grow back fine? The photo above is proof!
Just six days after I harvested the lettuce and cut it down to about three inches, it had already grown to be about six inches tall again!
Now keep in mind that some of the lettuce you see in the above photos was below the “cut line” when I harvested some lettuce six days ago. However, even some cut pieces, such as the one in the photo below, are now six inches tall as well.
Now let’s get into the various options for growing lettuce in an AeroGarden.
Growing Lettuce that Comes with the AeroGarden
When you purchase any AeroGarden, you get to choose the type of seed kit you want. Lettuce is one of the choices.
Depending on the type of AeroGarden you purchase, you’ll have different options available to you. As an example, if you purchase an AeroGarden Sprout (Amazon), since it has three grow pods, you’ll get three seed pods. If you purchase an AeroGarden Harvest (Amazon | Walmart), you’ll get six seed pods.
You can also purchase the lettuce seed pods separately directly from the AeroGarden website, or from Amazon. Check out the current price of AeroGarden Salad Greens Seed Pod Kit on Amazon.
Lettuce Varieties that Grow Well in an AeroGarden
Obviously, any of the official AeroGarden lettuce seed kits work well in AeroGardens. Here are a couple of varieties currently available on Amazon:
- AeroGarden Salad Greens Kit (includes red and green leaf lettuce, romaine, and butter head
- Heirloom Salad Greens (includes black seeded simpson, deer tongue Amish Green, red sails, marvel of 4 seasons, rouge d’hiver, and parris island)
You can also buy grow sponges and seeds and take a more DIY approach. That’s what I typically do. In fact, the reason the seed pods that I used in the grow for this article were so old is that I tend to take the DIY approach.
AeroGarden Sponge Options
If you decide to take the DIY approach, here are a few AeroGarden sponge options to consider that are available on Amazon.
- Official AeroGarden grow sponges
- Urban Leaf AeroGarden Compatible Sponges (best if you prefer to avoid peat moss. You can also purchase these directly from Urban Leaf.)
- Park Seed Bio Dome Sponges (my personal favorite)
- Cheap knock off sponges (no real name, but they work. You can read my review and see a demo of these sponges in my article, Do AeroGarden Knock Off Sponges Work?)
Non-AeroGarden Lettuce Seeds that Work Well in an AeroGarden
Here are a few different lettuce varieties that I’ve successfully grown in an AeroGarden using the DIY approach.
- Tom Thumb | Buy from True Leaf Market | Buy on Amazon
- Mini Romaine Blend | Buy on Amazon
- Marvel of 4 Seasons | Buy from True Leaf Market | Buy on Amazon | Buy from Eden Brothers
- Buttercrunch | Buy from Eden Brothers | Buy on Amazon
The bottom line is that when it comes to growing food in an AeroGarden, you simply can’t go wrong with lettuce! Lettuce is so quick and easy to grow, and since it grows back, I highly recommend giving it a try.
Happy lettuce growing!
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- AeroGarden Harvest Vs. Harvest XL | Is the Harvest XL Worth the Price?
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- The Ultimate Guide to Growing Microgreens in an AeroGarden
- Growing Green Beans in an AeroGarden Harvest and Harvest XL