Much of what I plant in the garden is still covered up. I cover the greens to keep out insects. The row cover is not easy to see under so I really don't know what is happening until I lift it up to peek. I decided I had to check on the lettuce today.
This is what I found in the lettuce area. I keep it covered early on because I plant radishes between rows of the lettuce and radishes are in the brassica family with a host of nasty insects that like to eat them. Once the radishes are pulled or are large enough I open up the lettuce bed. In this bed it is hard to see all the lettuce as the radishes are so huge. The French breakfast radishes sent to me by June grew very well and mostly were ready to pick. I left a couple in. Their foliage wasn't huge though. The huge foliage was on the right side. These are the white icicle radishes. They weren't quite sized up yet. Well except for the foliage. I hope the lettuce hiding in there survives until those radishes are pulled out.
The most interesting of the lettuces is Freckles sent to me by Emily. It is an old heirloom over two centuries old and has gotten many names over the years: Forellenschluss and Black Trout being other common names. I use Freckles because it is easier to type.
The Tom Thumb caught my eye. Sent by Stefaneener, it is one of her all time favorites. I'm not a huge fan of butterheads, but I have to admit it is one of the prettiest little heads of lettuce. The one in front seemed quite ready to pick, so out it came. I also picked some Deer Tongue lettuce from seed that I saved last year. I picked the outside leaves off of these and will keep letting them grow. I used half of the lettuce and a few radishes up to make my first salad of the season. Yum! If only I had some garlic scapes I could make my garlic scape dressing to go with it. But with early spring lettuce the "if onlys" are huge. I could use some cucumbers and tomatoes too.
I have a total of eight varieties, but most are romaines that will take longer to form heads. I want to do a good taste test of all of the romaines as leaf lettuce and romaine are my favorite types of lettuce. I'm pretty happy with the leaf lettuces I grow, Red Sails and Deer Tongue, but I really want to add a good romaine or two to my regulars.
I left the cover off of the lettuces as the radishes seemed big enough to withstand the insects at this point. It is a much prettier section now without that cover. Sadly the brassicas will have to have it for a good long time.