Lettuce has a fairly long growing season here in the Pacific Northwest. You can pretty much plant lettuce from Spring until Fall. It only gets tricky if it gets hot, as the seeds can dry out before they germinate. I tend to plant lettuce mostly in the Spring and the Fall. My favorite way to plant lettuce is to broadcast sow the seeds. Lettuce seeds are perfect for broadcast sowing, because they are small and don’t need to be buried deep in the ground. I think broadcast sowing seeds is fun too and quicker than making a bunch of tiny holes for a bunch of tiny seeds.
I just put the seeds in my hand and scatter them evenly over the area where I want them to grow.
I then cover the seeds lightly with sifted compost.
If you don’t have a compost sifter, don’t worry. Just use your hands to grind up some soil, so it is free of clumps, and lightly sprinkle that over your seeds. The goal is simply to keep the soil from crusting over, so the seeds can easily push through the soil when they germinate.
Next, I water the seeds in. Watering with a hose, with a powerful sprayer on it, can result in the seeds getting washed into one area. To keep the seeds from moving around too much, I gently water them in with a watering can.
The lettuce will grow in densely, so I just thin (and eat) the baby lettuce as it comes in, by pulling some heads up by the roots. I cut the roots off and feed them to the chickens, so they get a salad too! That give the others heads more space to grow bigger, at which point I will just cut the leaves and leave the roots for a longer harvest.