Johnny's March Newsletter : Growing Lettuce for All Markets

March 2013
In This Issue...

Advantages of growing mini versus full head lettuce

Growing Mini vs. Full-size Head Lettuce

Demand for mini head lettuce is on the increase, as consumers, chefs, and grocers take note of the excellent flavor and shelf life that mini head lettuce offers. Market growers are finding that mini heads can be much more profitable than full heads. Yet full-size heads still dominate the lettuce market. Avg Mini Head Diameter 6 in, Avg Full-size Head Diameter 9 inWe know you have to grow what sells best for you, which is why Johnny's offers an extensive selection of head lettuce types.

In this article, we'll tell you more about mini head lettuce and run some numbers, so you can decide whether to experiment with this rapidly emerging market trend.

Why Grow Salanova® Lettuce?

Salanova - compatible and effective hydroponic production

The Ultimate Efficiency Lettuce

Salanova is the latest innovation in lettuce for the salad mix market. Its unique core structure allows fully mature, compact heads of lettuce to be easily cut into individual uniform leaves once harvested. Salanova offers:

  • Versatility. More growing options and marketing opportunities than standard baby leaf.
  • Efficiency. Higher yield, increased shelf life, and easier to cultivate than baby leaf.
  • High value. Harvesting full-sized heads produces fully developed flavor, texture, and color compared to baby leaf.

The Salanova core structure -- which took over 20 years for breeders to develop -- allows it to be grown as fully mature, densely compact heads which, on harvesting, create the multitude of uniformly sized and shaped leaves. There are two distinct Salanova core types....

AgSquared -- What's New for 2013?

Trial AgSquared Free for a Month

AgSquared is a farm-management software program for diversified market farms. It helps growers like you seamlessly track the thousands of details you may currently be keeping in notebooks, on spreadsheets, and in your head. Launched in beta form in 2012, AgSquared has since been refined and enriched to make it even more useful for keeping you in control of your farming business. New features include:

JSS 40th Anniversary
Farm Visits & Grower Profiles

Living Water Farms, Strawn, Illinois

The Living Water Farms Family

Denise and Kevin Kilgus started gardening when they were married 30 years ago. Over the years, their efforts ranged from a backyard garden for their family of eight children to a collaboration with other local growers supplying a local grocery store.

"Living in the country, you need things for your kids to do," Denise said. "We believe in chores, so we have always had a garden." About 5 years ago, assessing the amount of work they were doing in the garden, the Kilgus family decided it was time to either get serious about market farming -- or give it up.

They got serious. Today they operate Living Water Farms in Strawn, Illinois, which consists of 9000 square feet of hydroponic greenhouse production. Six family members work in the business full or part time, and they employ numerous other local people to help with their year-round production. They deliver to restaurants, distributors, and supermarkets in Chicago, St. Louis, and Springfield, Illinois.

Also This Month

Video: Growing, Preparing, and Marketing Salanova® Lettuce

Watch Our Video to Learn About Salanova
Watch Video »

Grower Resources: Chart of Lettuce Tools by Culture

Chart of Lettuce Tools by Cultural Practice
See More »

News and Events

Johnny's Selected Seeds Celebrates 40th Anniversary
See More »

Grower's Library

Grower's Library
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Johnny's Selected Seeds | 955 Benton Avenue, Winslow, Maine 04901 | 1-877-564-6697