UC Master Gardeners, Santa Clara County, CA
University of California
UC Master Gardeners, Santa Clara County, CA

Monthly Tip

Bolting Lettuces

Tip description

In garden terms, bolting means sending up a flower stalk, not desirable unless you plan to save seeds. Seed packets say lettuce matures in 60–80 days, but the timing also depends on the weather. In warm weather, lettuce matures and bolts much faster. In cool temperatures, seedlings grow more slowly but will still mature and bolt eventually. If the center of the lettuce starts to push upwards, that’s a clue that it’s starting to bolt. Another clue is if you tear a leaf and see milky sap instead of clear juices. Harvest as soon as you notice, before the leaves become unpleasantly bitter.

More information: Growing Lettuce

Months applicable
  • January
  • February
  • March
  • November
  • December
  • 1. To-do

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