How to Grow Salad Greens in Garden Beds

Growing a successful crop of leafy greens in your garden will give you weeks of harvest.

Sow the Seeds

Plant both head and leaf lettuces in shallow rows, but head lettuce should be sown much more thinly. Once seeds have germinated, thin them out to 6–12 inches apart, depending on their final size.

Sow Lettuce Heads in Drills

Sow Lettuce Heads in Drills

Photo by: DK - How to Grow Practically Everything © 2010 Dorling Kindersley Limited

DK - How to Grow Practically Everything, 2010 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Take Care

Protect your plants from slugs, using mini cloches made from clear plastic bottles. You may also need to net them to keep birds from eating your crops. Water them regularly during summer. They are prone to bolting in hot weather, so plant them close to taller crops, such as beans, that will provide shade.

Protect Lettuce Plants with Netting

Protect Lettuce Plants with Netting

Photo by: DK - How to Grow Practically Everything © 2010 Dorling Kindersley Limited

DK - How to Grow Practically Everything, 2010 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Leafy Options: Planting and Aftercare

Arugula (image 1) is best sown in spring and early fall, when the cooler temperatures make it less likely to bolt. Sow thinly and protect the young seedlings from flea beetles, which nibble the leaves, by covering the plants with a fine mesh or garden fleece.

Lamb's lettuce (image 2) can be sown at any time in spring and summer. It's a useful crop to sow late in the season to provide a tasty winter substitute for lettuce. For the best quality leaves, grow lamb's lettuce under cloches, in a greenhouse or under well-vented plastic (keep out of direct sun).

Green Onions: Growing and Harvesting

Green onions are an ideal crop for garden beds and for pots and containers. Sprinkle a small amount of seed on the surface of the soil once every two weeks throughout spring and summer, to ensure a constant supply. In mild areas, green onions sown in late summer can be left in the soil during winter, to harvest the following spring.

Simply lift the tangy bulbs from the soil as you need them and use in salads or stir-fries.

Keep Reading

Next Up

How to Grow Mesclun

Learn how to grow ingredients for a delectible year-round salad.

How to Sow and Plant Fruiting Vegetables

Large leaves, golden flowers and heavy yields make squashes, zucchini and cucumbers ideal plants for productive pots.

How to Sow and Plant Mediterranean-Style Vegetables

The jewel-like fruits of these decorative plants make beautiful displays in pots in a greenhouse, on a windowsill or in a sunny spot outside.

How to Grow Parsnips

For the best winter parsnips, sow as soon as the soil has warmed up in spring. They will grow all summer, forming sweet and starchy winter roots.

How to Grow Shallots

Many people prefer the sweet, milder flavor of shallots as an alternative to onions. They can be harvested earlier and stored longer than onions.

How to Grow Watercress From Seedlings

One way to grow watercress is by starting with seeds, but you can also grow fresh plants by using watercress seedlings as a base.

Grow Asian Greens

These are some of the most useful fall vegetables, providing a variety of colors, textures and flavors, just as the weather is cooling.

Grow Easy Cress Indoors

Growing cress indoors provides a constant supply of fresh ingredients for salads and sandwiches all year round. This easy project is ideal for children, who love to watch the plants develop.

Growing Cress and Microgreens

Microgreens and cress can be grown year-round in small pots or trays indoors, and are ready to harvest in a week or two.

How to Plant an Indoor Salad Garden

Follow these simple tips to have fresh produce throughout the entire year.

1,000+ Photos

Browse beautiful photos of our favorite outdoor spaces: decks, patios, porches and more.


Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss HGTV in your favorite social media feeds.