Valmaine - a nice romaine lettuce
If you're looking for good lettuce, Valmaine is a great choice. It's sweet and abundant. What more could you ask for?
It's a romaine type lettuce so it tends to grow in a column, but you can use it just like leaf lettuce if you choose.
If you're unfamiliar with romaine type lettuce, don't hesitate to give them a try. You won't be sorry that you did.
Valmaine grows easily and provides abundance. It's cold hardy too.
This lettuce is great for sandwiches, salads, and munching straight from the stalk. It's light green in color and creates smooth, slightly ribbed 8 to 12 inch leaves that are broad, flat and sweet. It blends well with other lettuces in a salad.
It's reasonably tolerant to bolting and stays sweet even with elevated growing temperatures. That has me giving it high marks on my list of best vegetables.
If you harvest the outside leaves as the plant is developing, you'll be sure to have several months of harvest. This approach nearly eliminates the need to succession plant. You cut the outside leaves, and it regenerates new leaves on the main stalk.
As an alternative, romaine type lettuces can be harvested in a more traditional manner by taking the whole plant once it has formed a tightly grouped column of leaves. This whole plant approach will provide you with plenty of lettuce, but the harvest season will be measured in weeks, not months.
Romaine type lettuces are relatively cold hardy. They can be started indoors or outside, and can tolerate temperatures well below freezing if you provide some protection from the wind. Development is limited in cold weather, best in cool weather, and warmer conditions promote a growth and production sprint that will be challenging to keep up with.
If you grow this variety in a greenhouse, expect it to bolt after summer sets in. Once the plant starts to bolt, the leaves will have a bitter taste to them. I don't mind the bitter flavor, but some folks do.
Instead of removing a bolting plant, simply cut it back to the base and it'll regrow new shoots that will offer sweet lettuce leaves.
If you grew only Valmaine in your home vegetable garden, you wouldn't be disappointed. It is a great producer in a wide range of temperatures, and it requires no exceptional care.
Done with Valmaine, back to Growing Vegetables