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Thread: Little Gem help

  1. #1
    VegGirl71 is offline Germinator
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    Default Little Gem help

    Hello!

    I'm fairly new to veg growing. I have tried 3 times now to grow little gem, using GYO mag advice (which is very different from Quickcrop vids- also unhelpful) and other Youtube vids. They get very leggy and weak and then just shrivel up. I'm very frustrated as I know Lettuce is easy to grow...
    Can someone tell me - in plain language - where I am going wrong? I have plenty of seeds left and a germinator tray and seedling compost so I am ready to go.

    Many thanks in advance!

  2. #2
    veggiechicken's Avatar
    veggiechicken is online now Warning!! Contains Nuts
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    Hi and welcome.
    All plants get leggy and weak if they don't have enough light as they stretch towards whatever is available.
    Without knowing how you grow them its difficult to be specific.
    Make 2019 the Year of Random Seed sowing
    All we are saying is..........Give seeds a chance.
    @realveggiechicken

  3. #3
    ameno is offline Rooter
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    Probably too warm, if you're using a propagator. Lettuce are a cool weather crop. This time of year, they should really be sown outside.
    Otherwise, if you keep them watered and thin them to a sensible spacing then they should be fairly fool-proof.
    Maybe bad compost? Not all compost is equal. Some brands are very poor indeed, and will give weak growth and can even outright kill the plants.

  4. #4
    greenishfing's Avatar
    greenishfing is online now Cropper
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    You are probably trying too hard. Don't be so nice to them. They don't like too much heat. Just bung them in outdoors and thin them when they come up. Water if necessary and ignore them. As they get bigger eat the thinnings.

  5. #5
    VegGirl71 is offline Germinator
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    Thanks all. I'll bung them outside - my mixed leaves are doing well so far. I prob was being too kind! They were on a south facing window sill in a tiny propagator so I'll put them straight in a pot then?

  6. #6
    ameno is offline Rooter
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    Quote Originally Posted by VegGirl71 View Post
    Thanks all. I'll bung them outside - my mixed leaves are doing well so far. I prob was being too kind! They were on a south facing window sill in a tiny propagator so I'll put them straight in a pot then?
    I would say they were definitely too hot then.
    Yeah, plant them out and they should hopefully do fine.

  7. #7
    annie8 is offline Tuber
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    I have to say I always thought lettuce should be easy but I don’t always find that. I few little gem and had a great first year then last year was awful. My main problem with lettuce is they go to seed so easily. Think last year was just too hot for them and I prob didn’t water enough. Am finding that with my rocket even this early in the year and they are outside. Am trying romaine and cut and come again which I tend have less problems with.

  8. #8
    Scarlet's Avatar
    Scarlet is online now Gone with the Wind
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    I sow a small pinch in a pot every few weeks in the greenhouse to get them started. Then I stagger plant the seedlings into containers every couple of weeks. Keeping the seedlings in a small pot will check growth and they are fine for several weeks.
    I keep this going from Feb - October.
    Early in in the year the lettuces are kept in the GH as the extra protection and warmth bring them on faster and then in the warmer months they are kept outside.

    I've 4 pots on the go at the moment at different stages.
    Little Gem help-7605be4e-e715-49f1-9ff4-6b7ffc80dacc.jpg

    Once they are planted up I stick some peas and mustard seeds in the pots to grow on inbetween the lettuces. I never pick them whole - harvest just the leaves.
    Little Gem help-35e75662-9229-470a-95ab-9dd0ba10ba8a.jpg

    Little Gem help-fcdc5228-a3c7-4602-a5d0-cd5431761515.jpg
    An old wheel barrow - unfortunately it has had a few accidents. Teenagers and animals
    I also grow a couple of trays of peas for peashoots.
    Last edited by Scarlet; 17-05-2019 at 08:48 AM.

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