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LACTUCA sativa 'Red Velvet'

Image of Lactuca sativa 'Red Velvet'

James H. Schutte

Family

Asteraceae

Botanical Name

LACTUCA sativa 'Red Velvet'

Plant Common Name

Garden Lettuce, Red Velvet Garden Lettuce

General Description

The lettuce variety 'Red Velvet' forms handsome, bolt-resistant rosettes of ruffled, maroon-red leaves with green undersides.

This looseleaf lettuce grows from seed to harvest in about 55 days. Successive plantings every two weeks will yield a continual harvest as long as moderate weather prevails.

Looseleaf lettuce is a cold-hardy annual vegetable grown for its crisp tasty leaves that occur in loose clumps (rather than dense heads). In hot weather, the whole leafy clump elongates and becomes bitter-flavored. When fully elongated it "bolts," producing tall branched stems covered with pale yellow flowers followed by fluffy white seedheads. Once plants begin to bolt, pull them or allow them to set seed for collection.

In temperate zones lettuce is favored as a spring and fall crop; in frost-free winter zones it is grown in winter. Full sun, rich well-drained soil, and regular water are needed for good production and performance. Use 'Red Velvet' to dress up vegetable gardens, containers, or flower borders. It also makes an attractive (if short-lived) edging. Looseleaf types are typically harvested leaf by leaf. Just gather some of the attractive outer leaves and allow the plant to continue to grow until maturity.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    12 - 1

  • Sunset Zone

    A1, A2, A3, H1, H2, 1a, 1b, 2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24

  • Plant Type

    Vegetable

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun

  • Height

    6"-8" / 15.2cm - 20.3cm

  • Width

    7"-11" / 17.8cm - 27.9cm

  • Bloom Time

    Summer, Indeterminate

  • Native To

    Northern Europe, Asia

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Neutral

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Loam

  • Growth Rate

    Very Fast

  • Water Requirements

    Average Water

  • Habit

    Rosette/Stemless

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Insignificant

  • Flower Color

    Light Yellow

  • Fruit Color

    Tan, Brown

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Green, Purple, Burgundy, Dark Red

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Green, Purple, Burgundy, Dark Red

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Green, Purple, Burgundy, Dark Red

  • Foliage Color (Winter)

    Green, Purple, Burgundy, Dark Red

  • Fragrant Flowers

    No

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Flower Petal Number

    Single

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    No

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Foliage Texture

    Coarse

  • Foliage Sheen

    Glossy

  • Evergreen

    No

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Container, Edging, Edible, Herb / Vegetable, Mixed Border

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Attracts

    Butterflies

  • Self-Sowing

    Yes