Salads are currently popular. One of them is Iceberg lettuce. This low-calorie healthy product attracts with its calm, neutral taste. It goes well with any sauces. At the same time, its resistance to low temperatures, unpretentiousness when grown in a country house and a decorative look attracts many summer residents.
Description and origin of lettuce Iceberg
Iceberg lettuce is an early crop, ripening period 50-90 days , refers to the head lettuce. Externally, it resembles an early, white cabbage. A rosette of light green leaves with a carved rim forms a small head of cabbage weighing 300-600 g .
In taste, it is similar to Chinese cabbage, but differs in juicy and crispy leaves. These properties and attract in the preparation of cold snacks and in the design of dishes.
The plant has gained its worldwide distribution thanks to American breeders. They received a culture in the early twentieth century. Currently grown in industrial volumes. Originally it was called "crispy salad."After its taste was appreciated.
Recommendations before sowing at the cottage
- The culture prefers to loamy or sandy, neutral soils .Therefore, in order to reduce the acidity, dolomite flour, wood ash or limestone are introduced into the ground.
- For the prevention of plant diseases, planting is carried out according to the requirements for crop rotation. It is advisable that last year cabbage, potatoes, onions or grains would grow on the beds.
- Salad is a culture that is able to accumulate nitrates in the leaves. Therefore, to make nitrate fertilizer should be with caution. It is better to fertilize before plantings with humus, compost, or from autumn with manure.
- Early ripening and ornamental appearance allows you to grow not only as a monoculture on a separate bed. You can also grow together with potatoes, onions, carrots or in the rows of zucchini, cucumbers. While these cultures grow and gain strength, the salad will have time to ripen. A spectacular view with carved leaves is used in the decoration of flower beds.
- Select sunny spots or penumbra.
- Culture is cold-resistant and can withstand frosts up to -2-6 degrees. Growth begins at +5 degrees. And optimal for active growth + 18 + 25 degrees.
- To increase the yield period, you can sow in several stages, every 10-14 days.
- Seeds, the day before sowing, is recommended to germinate in a damp cloth.
Agrotechnics planting and growing seeds
Sowing seeds in open ground
In the first half of April, preparing a bed. Well loosened and covered with covering material to warm the earth. When the positive temperatures have been established, is at the end of April, at the beginning of May, on the garden makes rows 3 cm deep, after 40 cm. The earth is compacted and shed with water. Seeds are sown at a distance of 20-30 cm and covered with 1 cm of earth.
The is covered with .Shoots should be expected in 6-14 days. The lower the temperature, the longer the shoots.
It is better to use peat or plastic cups .When transplanted into open ground, the root structure is not disturbed, and the culture takes root faster.
Soil is used store or from the site, from the place of future planting. The ground in the cups is slightly compacted and seeded with 2-3 seeds, 1 cm is poured from above. Spill water and cover with a film to preserve moisture and heat.
The temperature of + 16 + 17 degrees can withstand shoots for 4-5 days, then you can raise to +25 degrees .After 3-4 weeks, in mid-May, when the plant will have 4-5 basic leaves, transplanted into open ground.
3-5 days before the planned transplantation, the seedlings should be hardened. To carry out in the afternoon from the house to the street in a penumbra, in a quiet place, without wind and drafts. In sunny places can get burned.
. Transplantation of seedlings into open ground.
. In a prepared, loose bed 40 cm. make rows of holes. In rows, the distance between the holes is 20–30 cm.
A wide, pointed stake can be used to make neat, level holes of the desired depth and diameter. The earth in such holes will immediately condense.
Seedlings and wells should be shed with well. If the plant is removed from the cups, then by tapping or pressing the container lightly. In this case, peat cubes are good, from which you do not need to get a plant and can be planted directly into the ground.
Sprinkle the seedlings lightly with earth. Deepen the root system is not worth it, because it has a surface type of growth. By planting seedlings at varying degrees of growth, you can stretch the harvest period. Stronger shoots will yield faster, weaker ones later.
. Seeding before winter.
. Another option is to sow in late autumn. It is good because the spring ripening of lettuce occurs 10-15 days earlier, it is larger and stronger. But at the same time there is a risk of the part of the seeds freezing out. Therefore, increase the number of seeds for sowing before the winter 1.5 -2 times .
When the outside temperature is within the range of +1 +3 degrees , seeds are laid in the prepared bed. Buried by 1-1.5 cm. In this mode, the seeds will safely go before winter, they will not germinate. The bed is covered with dry grass, foliage and other covering material. Open in the spring when it is warm.
Care. The main care is feeding, watering, loosening, weeding and thinning.
- Feed .Perform 1-2 times before sowing and during the formation of heads. The best option to combine with watering and feed organic
fertilizers. To do this, a solution of mullein or bird droppings will fit( for 10 liters, 1-2 tablespoons).
- Watering .Regular moderate watering is needed, abundant every other day or once a week. If the soil is dry, the heads of cabbages are poorly formed; if it is wet, the risk of rot. After the formation of ovaries, watering is reduced.
- Loosening and weeding .Periodic loosening is shallow so as not to damage the roots. The first through 3-4 weeks after sowing. At the same time weeding from weeds.
- If the shoots are thickened, then thin out the in two stages. Without performing these works on time, the head will be poorly formed. The first time in the phase of one of these leaves, keep shoots after 4-5 cm. The second time in phase 6-7 of these leaves. Leave plants every 20-30 cm.
In addition, the plant may be subject to diseases and pests.
At the end of growth, with calcium deficiency, can develop vertex rot , inside the stalks. For prevention, spray once a week with a solution of calcium nitrate( 100-150 grams per 12 liters of water).
With the defeat of cruciferous flea , pour plenty of water and sprinkle with wood ash. The procedure after 3-4 days to repeat.
The reasons for the lack of ovaries of heads of
Paying attention to proper planting and care, gardeners do not always wait for young heads. What is the reason?
- Insufficient watering. Until the formation of ovaries carry out regular watering.
- Shady landing site. The optimal place is sunny with penumbra.
- The temperature of is below +19 degrees , especially at night. It is necessary to shelter the plants. The best mode for forming is +20 +22 degrees.
- temperature is above +25 degrees .this leads to overriding, acquiring a bitter taste, flowering.
- Not enough sunny days.
- Thickened landing or thinning was not carried out on time.
. If the average summer temperatures in the region are often above 25 degrees at the time of formation of the ovaries, then the crops should be planted through seedlings or into the greenhouse.
Cutting and storage of
45-90 days after sowing , when the diameter of the coaches reaches 5-10 cm , cutting occurs.
For better preservation of the leaf plate yield, the crop is harvested early in the morning. Choose cabbages of average density. Young and loose poorly stored, and dense overripe inferior in taste.
- Plastic container and close.
- In wet cloth and in bag.
It is interesting that after cutting the culture continues to grow .In place of cutting, new ovaries grow on the radical neck. If desired, you can leave one for further growth.
Small cabbages with delicious, crisp Iceberg lettuce more and more conquer our taste preferences. Uncomplicated care, good preservation and the ability to grow this product, from spring to late autumn, has in order to plant it on your site.