How Many Types of Lettuce Are There? – 12 Delicious Varieties To Grow!

These vegetables, which are included under the larger category of salad leaves, are often served raw, seasoned, and mixed with other salad components. If like me you are wondering exactly how many types of lettuce are there then this is the article for you.

Different varieties of lettuce may contribute a lot of flavor and texture to whatever you’re creating, whether you use them raw or cooked. If you do decide to prepare them, do it in a fast sauté or wilting method; all of this will cause the delicate green leaves to lose their distinct flavor. Throw in a few good homegrown tomatoes and you have an appetizing salad!

How Many Types of Lettuce Are There?

Lettuce and Growing Conditions

Lettuce is a cold-weather vegetable that grows best when the average daily temperature is between 60 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit. It’s best to plant it in the spring or late summer. 

High temperatures impede development, make the leaves bitter, and cause the seed stalk to form and extend quickly (known as bolting). Some lettuce cultivars and types are more heat resistant than others.

Lettuce also grows fast compared to other types of salad and vegetables. To find out more see my article on the 5 best fast-growing vegetables!

How Many Types of Lettuce Are There?

Every day, you put lettuce on sandwiches and sides, but looking down the salad bar selections may have you thinking if one variety of leaf is better than the others — and is there even a change if a recipe asks for Boston instead of Bibb?

The plethora of lettuce kinds available at the supermarket and grocery stores provide a vast range of textures, colors, and flavors, far off the iceberg lettuce we all know and love—perfectly round and crisp, all water, and you can keep them a long time after harvest. You can produce something intriguing to eat and look at instead of a bland-looking and tasting salad.

Lettuce comes in a variety of shapes and sizes. There are 7 main different types: Crisphead, butterhead, leaf, stem, summercrisp, oilseed, and cos or romaine lettuces are generally the ones you’re most familiar with. I have included all of these lettuce types with pictures below.

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12 Lettuce Varieties For Your Garden

Romaine Lettuce

How Many Types of Lettuce Are There

This huge leafy lettuce is sturdier than others, with a broad middle rib that provides a satisfying crunch. This lettuce has a mild bitterness because of the rib. Romaine adds a powerful crunch to any meal with its long, a little bit bitter leaves and sweeter cores. It may also be grilled because of its strong texture. This is the lettuce that was first used in the Caesar salad.

The lettuces Little Gem and Little Caesar are popular among this group, although there are many others.

Romaine Lettuce Growers Info

Temperature Range60 to 65 degrees F (15 to 18C)
Soil RequirementsLoamy well-draining soil
Sunlight RequirementsPartial Shade
Time To Germinate7 to 15 Days
Time To Harvest60 to 70 Days
Soil pH6 to 7
Hardiness Zones2a – 11b

Romaine Lettuce Growing Tips

Use the following tips for a successful harvest:

  • Protect From Slugs! – use plenty of slug traps and where possible keep them well covered using a fine mesh. Alternativly try growing romaine in a sunny indoor window space. Consider organic methods of slug control
  • Succession Plant – keep sowing every few weeks for a continuous supply
  • Space – Give them space to grow don’t be fooled they need 12 to 15 inches to get big

Do you have any growing tips? if so please leave a comment below.

Iceberg Lettuce

How Many Types of Lettuce Are There
Iceberg Lettuce

Iceberg is noted for being crisp, refreshing, and watery. It grows in basketball-sized heads with huge pale-green leaves that are closely packed. It’s not as tasty as other lettuces, though.

It may be stored unwashed in a ziploc bag in the fridge for up to two weeks, which is twice as long as most other forms of lettuce.

For a side salad or wedge salad, this is the gold standard. When shredded and packed into subs, tacos, and sandwiches, it gives a pleasing crisp, chilly feel.

Populate Iceberg lettuce varieties:

  • Ballande
  • Crispino
  • Legacy
  • Mission
  • Ithaca
  • Summertime
  • Sun Devil

Iceberg Lettuce Growers Info

Temperature Range60 to 65 degrees F (15 to 18C)
Soil RequirementsMoisture-retentive soil (will tolerate most types)
Sunlight RequirementsFull Sun
Time To Germinate5 to 10 Days
Time To Harvest55 to 90 Days
Soil pH6 to 7
Hardiness Zones1 – 11

Butterhead Lettuce

How Many Types of Lettuce Are There

Butterhead lettuce comes in two varieties: Boston and Bibb. Lettuce leaves have a delicate texture. Butter lettuce has a silky, butter-like feel, as the name indicates. The more costly Bibb is sometimes offered in a Tupperware box to protect the fragile leaves. They’re also known as round lettuces.

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Butter lettuce’s fragile leaves are best used in light salads, but its broad, flexible leaves may also be used as a wrap. Cooked ground chicken or shrimp can be served in any style of lettuce cup.

Butterhead Lettuce Growers Info

Temperature Range45 to 80 degrees F (7 to 26C)
Soil RequirementsWell Drained Soil
Sunlight RequirementsFull Sun
Time To Germinate7 to 14 Days
Time To Harvest55 to 65 Days
Soil pH6 to 7
Hardiness Zones2 – 11

Frisée’s

How Many Types of Lettuce Are There

The radicchio/endive/chicory family includes frisée, but the sort you’ll find in grocery stores has extremely green, curly leaves that are great for putting in a fresh vinaigrette.

These yellow and green-tinged curled leaves have a little bitter flavor, a crisp stem, and a lot of texture. The manufacturer shielded them from light during the growth phase, resulting in their light green, yellow, and white colors.

Its ruffled texture is finest when eaten fresh or slightly heated.

Frisée’s Lettuce Growers Info

Temperature Range60 to 65 degrees F (15 to 18C)
Soil RequirementsRich Loamy Well draining Soil
Sunlight RequirementsPartial Shade
Time To Germinate5 to 10 Days
Time To Harvest45 to 90 Days
Soil pH6.5 to 7.8
Hardiness Zones4 to 9

Endive

How Many Types of Lettuce Are There

Chicory is a kind of endive. It’s a terrific complement to any salad because of its unusual oval form, silky, satiny texture, and moderate bitterness. Its scoop-like form makes it ideal for serving tiny appetizers.

With their spoon-shaped leaves, endives can easily scoop up toppings or shine on their own when toasted with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. The leaves can also be eaten whole or chopped in salads.

Endive Lettuce Growers Info

Temperature Range60 to 75 degrees F (15 to 18C)
Soil RequirementsRich Loamy Well draining Soil
Sunlight RequirementsPartial Shade
Time To Germinate5 to 10 Days
Time To Harvest45 to 90 Days
Soil pH6.5 to 7.8
Hardiness Zones4 to 9

Little Gem Lettuce

How Many Types of Lettuce Are There

Little Gem lettuce looks like baby romaine, but it’s a full-grown type. The leaves are firm, crisp, and delicious. It’s a hybrid between butter lettuce and romaine lettuce.

These delicious, crisp micro lettuce heads have lots of nooks and crevices that create perfect small pockets for salad dressing. Little Gems are delicious when eaten fresh, sliced, whole, grilled, or pan-fried. 

Looseleaf Lettuce

How Many Types of Lettuce Are There

Despite the crisp stem, they have a mild taste and are surprisingly malleable. Salads benefit from their uneven ruffle surfaces, which offer layers of texture. Vitamin A, potassium, and folic acid are all abundant in them. It contains a significant amount of vitamin C and calcium. It has a minimal calorie, fat, and salt content by nature.

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As the leaves are so large, it’s best to break them up into small pieces for the salad. They’re also delicious puréed into soups, and the broad leaves combine with the sturdy rib to make excellent lettuce wraps.

Coral Lettuce

How Many Types of Lettuce Are There

Coral is a loose leaf plant that comes in a range of colors, including brilliant green, deep red, and speckled. The leaves are strong and crisp, with tight, delicate curls and a moderate taste.

These leaves may be used in salads, sandwiches, burgers, and other dishes. This plant with curled leaves is commonly eaten raw and may add color, texture, and healthy volume to salads.

Arugula

How Many Types of Lettuce Are There

This Mediterranean green has an earthy, somewhat sour flavor with a powerful, peppery sting to it. Arugula leaves have rounded margins that undulate from broad to slight, comparable to oakleaf lettuce. Baby arugula’s edges aren’t as distinct.

Fiber, vitamin A, potassium, vitamin C, calcium, folate, vitamin K, iron, phosphorus, magnesium, and manganese are all abundant in arugula.

Arugula can be consumed raw in salads with strong flavors, wilted into pasta, cooked into a gratin, or combined into a spread.

Mâche

How Many Types of Lettuce Are There

Before it was cultivated and produced for human food, mache was considered a weed in Europe. This salad green has a moderate, somewhat sweet flavor and is often marketed with its soil still attached.

Trying to make a full salad with a mâche base might be costly due to the tiny size of the leaves. Its leaves are very fragile and easily bruised, so handle them with caution.

This delicate green is best used in salads for special occasions. Its mild flavor pairs well with spicy greens like arugula or maybe eaten simply prepared on its own. It’s served with walnuts and beets in France. You can also these leaves in soups.

Oakleaf Lettuce

How Many Types of Lettuce Are There

The leaves of this buttery lettuce are shaped like those of an oak tree, thus the name. The leaves of this species of lettuce are a little shorter and squat, and the tops of the leaves have a softer feel than the red and green leaf lettuce.

The mixed greens provide as a vehicle for components with a wide range of tastes, from rich to light, earthy to spicy to sweet. Green Oak Leaf lettuce may also be used as a bed for prepared grilled fish, meats, and stir-fries in wraps, sandwiches, fresh rolls, and tacos.

Speckled Lettuce

How Many Types of Lettuce Are There

The loose-leaf cultivar Speckled Lettuce features juicy, robust, light green leaves speckled with crimson quarter-inch specks. These leaves have a murky, mild flavor that reminds me of watercress. The bright coloration typically suggests that the lettuce is a cross-bread kind.

Keep these speckled leaves whole or rip them into big pieces and put them into a salad to highlight their distinct look.

Conclusion

Lettuce is a daisy-like annual plant of the Asteraceae family. It is commonly grown as a leaf vegetable, although its stem and seeds are also harvested. Lettuce is most commonly seen in salads, although it can also be found in other dishes. The above-mentioned types of lettuce are the most common types, however, there are many other types as well. I hope you enjoyed reading my article on how many types of lettuce are there. If you enjoyed this or want to leave any feedback please fill in the comments below.

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