Bring the salad

When I seeded my first crop for the Fall, I worked willy-nilly, not really paying close attention to the directions on the back of the seed packet. I mean, really. Who needs to follow the directions on the seed packet?

Well, I have the answer, folks. The only people who need to follow the directions on the seed packet are people who want their seed to actually sprout and, eventually, turn into something edible.

Funny how that works.

After my Pilates instructor, Elesa, gave me the suggestion to try the lettuce planting again, I screwed up my courage.

I didn’t actually go buy seeds or anything, just walked around with my screwed up courage for about two weeks. Then I bought seeds. This time, I bought three kinds of lettuce, and, truth be told, I’ve already forgotten what varieties I bought. As far as I’m concerned, the only variety I’m looking for is live, edible lettuce. You know, the kind that actually comes out of the seed, breaks the surface, and maybe even makes it to a salad bowl someday.

This time, I picked four areas: three for the lettuce, and one for the arugula. I used my trusty spade to turn the dirt, just enough to loosen it up. Then, instead of using my failed approach of digging down and dropping in the seed, I just scattered each seed packet, one packet per spot, realizing as I scattered that I might be setting myself up for some kind of major thinning operation.

Baby arugulaThen again, I do have the rabbit to help me with that, so I didn’t spend much time worrying about it.

Once I’d scattered the seed, I just ladled enough dirt to barely cover the seeds, tamping it down just enough to be sure it wouldn’t blow away and leave the seeds exposed. Then I watered everything and crossed my fingers that things would work a little better this time.

Go figure. A week later, I had three little thickets of lettuce, and a crazy patch of arugula. Bring the salad, little seedlings. Bring the salad.

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12 Responses to “Bring the salad”


  1. 1 chrispy September 28, 2006 at 12:38 am

    I might actually be tempted to plant lettuce with that kind of success.

  2. 2 inadvertentgardener September 28, 2006 at 12:43 am

    Chrispy, we’ll see…I hate to use the s-word until I actually see something in a bowl in my kitchen. There are a lot of variables between little plot and table…

  3. 3 kitchenparade September 28, 2006 at 6:40 am

    Try try and try again … someone must’ve said that … course they might not know the power of a hungry bunny …

  4. 4 inadvertentgardener September 28, 2006 at 7:15 am

    Alanna, it’s definitely true. And, there’s always the variable of the weather, and whether or not my baby lettuce will freeze to death. Ah, the drama of the garden…

  5. 5 steven September 29, 2006 at 10:12 am

    If you’re lucky, the arugula will have time to flower and set seed (if you don’t eat it all) and the patch will reseed itself.

  6. 6 Lydia September 29, 2006 at 3:27 pm

    There’s nothing better than the surprises that appear in the garden late in the season! Your late seeding of lettuce and arugula are such fun. I have a very robust crop of parsley now, when it’s almost October — but all summer the parsley was horrid. Go figure.

  7. 7 cole September 29, 2006 at 6:40 pm

    Mmmmmm. Arugla. Me likey with goat cheese, good olive oil, Red Sea Salt (trader joes?) , splash of cider vinegar and dill. Hmmmm.

  8. 8 Janet September 30, 2006 at 11:12 am

    When in doubt, read the instructions… ;o)

    Actually, I’ve found it very useful to read the instructions even when I think I know what I’m doing. It’s amazing what you can learn.

  9. 9 inadvertentgardener September 30, 2006 at 1:47 pm

    Steven, excellent…how late in the season does that usually happen? I’m not sure we really have enough time.

    Cole, I’m definitely trying that recipe — sounds delish!

    Janet, you’re absolutely right. It’s also amazing what you can learn about what you skipped by not reading the directions closely enough…

  10. 10 inadvertentgardener September 30, 2006 at 3:06 pm

    Lydia, my parsley was pretty horrid this summer, too…not sure what that was about. I’m glad you’re getting some rebound there, though!


  1. 1 The Joyful Gardener » October Garden Fest Trackback on October 15, 2006 at 6:55 am
  2. 2 An impulse purchase of the foreign kind « The Inadvertent Gardener Trackback on February 19, 2008 at 7:50 am

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