~ LETTUCE Seed ~

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We are looking for new colours and textures to add to your salads, but of course with bolt-resistance and good flavour as well.

People sometimes think only of lettuce for their salads, and we have some really good ones here. But there are many other plants that are equally nice and just as easy to grow - so check the rest of the catalogue for things like:

Anyways, on to the lettuces! We've listed them by the types of head they make.

Sow short rows often, to keep a good supply through the season, and not be overwhelmed.
If you end up with too many, make lettuce soup!

Small screen: Turn your device sideways to view sowing calendar.

= normal sowing & harvest time = also possible depending on conditions

(Note: If you really can't decide which to get, at the very bottom is our Secret Mix of lettuces.)

~ Crisphead Lettuces ~

Red Icebergplant picture

A really showy red variety of iceberg lettuce. It has tight round heads wrapped in deep red leaves. Inside the head is bright green and so you get two colours for the price of one.

It stands well for a long time - making big tight heads quickly, and is nice and sweet, with good tolerance of cold and wet conditions.

Dark red iceberg, very pretty, now exceedingly rare

250 organic seed £


plant pictureJack Ice

This fantastic lettuce has dark green, crisp iceberg leaves forming a loose rosette, with spiky, toothed edges. It is very resistant to disease and cold weather.

Does well sown in spring/summer but also good for use as a winter lettuce, as it is tolerant of lower light levels.

Toothed crisp leaves, cold resistant.

250 organic seed £


plant pictureFairy Tales (aka "Posavka") BOLT-RESISTANT

A large heading variety from Slovenia, making a tightly wrapped ball of crisp green leaves, the edges of which are just touched with a tinge of red. It’s really pretty! But the most remarakble thing in our trials was how bolt-resistant it was, it didn't run to flower or get bitter in the very hot spells we had, even when all the other lettuces gave up.

Normally sown in spring but reputedly it also has some cold resistance so worth trying as a winter lettuce in milder areas.

The intensity of the red colouring will depend on night-time temperatures and so varies with the season.

400 seed £


Reine des Glaces
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This has been hugely popular since we first added it to the list. The name means 'Queen of the Ices' and it is a fantastic crisphead lettuce - green tightly wrapped crisp iceberg heads, with incredibly frilly & toothed leaves around them. This one has been a real attention getter in the garden every summer.

Actually about 200 years old, this strain has recently been reselected for home gardeners, and the seed we have is really vigorous.

Here in the picture it is being modelled by our neighbour Mika.

It has had fantastic feedback from all over the country, everyone seems to want it in increasing numbers every year. It doesn't produce a massive amount of seed, so we've had to give slightly smaller packets - but it should give you a very good crop of lettuce, especially if you start them in trays or modules. Save your own seed for next year using the instructions supplied!

Toothed iceberg, incredible, fantastic lettuce. Can also be grown as a Winter Lettuce, the picture here shows it unearthed from the snow where it was growing high in the Pyrenees. plant picture

350 seed, organic £


~ Cos or Romaine Type Lettuces ~

'Cos' is the name for lettuces with upright heads of crispy leaves. They don't make much of a tight ball,
so you can take leaves off a few at a time as you need them.

plant picture Devils Tongue

Here is a great new, large, upright lettuce with glowing red/purple oval leaves.

It was very quick to develop, as well as beautiful, in our 2008 trials, and attracted a lot of attention from visitors. We liked it because it stood well without bolting, and didn't get bitter in the heat. This is one of the few lettuces that has both white and brown seeds, so don’t panic when you see them mixed in the packet!

Modelled here by Paul M.

350 seed, organic £


plant pictureDark Roden NEW

A new super-dark-red romaine lettuce, bred from 'Roden' but selected for even darker red leaves, that really does appear almost black in the sun. This one grows quickly and not only looks great in salad, but also in the garden as it is such an unusual colour.

Very good as a spring or autumn lettuce. It doesn't like the peak of summer heat, as those black leaves really absorb the sun, so this one works best sown in early spring or late summer, when the temperatures are a little cooler.

350 seed £


plant pictureRossa di Trento

A lovely new lettuce from the mountains of northern Italy . It makes large heads are loosely wrapped, with a proper red blush to the edge of each leaf.

Absolutely gorgeous, it really is that red & green together, fantastic in a salad bowl!

about 500 seed, £


plant picture Australian Yellowleaf

A very large open-headed lettuce, with bright, bright green-yellow leaves that are gently frilled. Good flavour and crunchy texture. Very decorative, and slow to bolt. It makes huge lettuces – you only need three or four to keep you in salads for ages. This is still Ben's favourite.

We've had lots of really nice feedback from people on this one, including one person who was very happy but said we need to stress the size of it more - it outgrew their 40" wide raised bed despite being beheaded several times! Actually, ours don't usually get that big, but then we do eat a lot of salad . . .

Large bright yellow loosehead.

350 seed £


plant pictureplant pictureSuper Red Ruffles

This is a new one that is very exciting, from Wild Garden Seeds' collection. It starts out quite pale, but then develops a really good bright red colour as it gets bigger. The leaf base and midrib stay bright green, so the contrast looks amazing in a salad.

Incredibly limited supply from our breeding stocks. Just 200 packets this year!

200 seed, organic £


~ Oakleaf Lettuces ~

plant picture'Emerald Oak' - EARLY

This is such a lovely and popular lettuce. We've offered it for years but the breeders recently retired. We couldn't let it go extinct! From just the last few seeds we had in our seedbank we have managed to get it into production here in Wales.

Its an early, cool-weather oakleaf lettuce which grows quickly from an early spring sowing. Semi-heading, it quickly makes small loose green ruffled heads that are tasty & crunchy, the right size for 1 or 2 people.

A good variety for the start of the season : sow several times in succession until the weather warms up.

300 seed £


plant pictureFlashy Butter Oak

This pretty lettuce is a big, vigorous oakleaf type, with fantastic markings - the large pale green leaves are patched all over with dark red splashes.

It is ideal for picking a few leaves at a time, for attractive and tasty salads. One that we always include in our own sowings for the kitchen.

Absolutely stunning - and tastes great too.

250 seed, organic £


plant pictureFlaming Oakhearts Mix

Another amazing creation from Wild Garden Seeds’ lettuce programme, which we have taken on for further development. A whole mixed family of beautiful oak-leaved lettuces splashed with red.

Incredibly limited supply from our breeding stocks. 200 packets and then that's it!

200 seed, organic £


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~ Butterhead (tender-leaf) Lettuces ~

Butterhead lettuces have a softer texture, the opposite of an iceberg lettuce. They're all about flavour rather than crunch.

plant pictureOptima SPECIAL

Optima is a special find. It has a good butterhead leaves,  but unusually for this type, also has really crunchy leaf ribs, so a single leaf provides this amazing contrast of textures in your salad.

It was a complete star in our 2008 trials - growing really well despite the cold and wet.

250 seed, organic £



plant pictureFor those of you who want something new and exciting, we are offering this very mixed selection of lettuces.

The Mortons' Secret Mix

It is hard to explain just how wonderful this lettuce mix is. It's always tremendously popular and every harvest sells out, no matter how much we grow.

It started with seed from all of Frank & Karen Morton's lettuce breeding programmes. A huge diversity of forms and shapes, and to be clear this is NOT just all our seed mixed up, but different varieties you won't get elsewhere.

Since 2014 we've been adding even more varieties to the original mixture, to extend the range of colours and types even further. This is incredibly popular, and quite rightly so - its a real bargain.

Frank & Karen have now retired and we are taking on maintenance of this incredible genepool on our farm in Wales.

Reds, greens, brights, darks, splashes, blushes, butterheads, oakleafs, crispheads, and deer-tongue types. .. so many different lettuces!

250 seed, organic £


~ Winter Lettuce Seed ~

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What's this you ask? Winter lettuce are simply very-cold-hardy strains, selected for sowing after mid-summer, for harvest in autumn - and with a bit of protection, on into winter. Ideal if you have a polytunnel and want winter salads.

Small screen: Turn your device sideways to view sowing calendar.

'Winter Marvel'

We have been trying out all sorts of different ways of getting more salads overwinter, and this lettuce always does very well.

It is a traditional French variety chosen specifically for sowing in late summer and early autumn. It is quite hardy and will do very nicely in an unheated polytunnel or greenhouse, providing salads in winter and spring when they’re most appreciated.

It is remarkably cold-resistant and carried on in the polytunnel long after other varieties had given up!

plant picturePhoto taken 28th February in an unheated polytunnel in Wales.

350 seed £


USE 'Jack Ice' & 'Reine des Glaces' as WINTER LETTUCE

These lettuce, which are the ones in the snowy photo, are already listed above in the normal lettuce section, & are excellent winter lettuce, very cold resistant, as well as being also suited to sowing at other times of year.

Saving Lettuce Seed:

plant pictureLettuce hardly cross, so you can just keep seed from the plant you like the most. But don't take seed from the ones that flower first - you'd be selecting for early-bolting lettuces, which is not at all what you want! Here is Stephanie picking some seed from the Australian Yellowleaf by hand, which is fine for small quantities.

plant pictureAnother way -you can see Ben has cut whole heads from the plants and let them dry, and is then stomping on them to knock the seeds out.

There are more detailed home-seed saving guides (printable) over to the left of this page, in the box titled 'SeedSaving', with sheets on drying and storing your seed too. And of course, seed-saving is only possible because these are all real, non-hybrid varieties.
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