Monday, March 3, 2008

Cut-and-Come-Again Lettuce Mix

I purchased a pack of mixed lettuce seeds chosen for flavor and earlyness from Seeds from Italy (Franchi seed). Its a mixture of 13 lettuce varieties, but for some reason (superstition?) the SFI description says it has 14 varieties. The package has the names in extremely fine print - here they are:

Bionda Ricciolina: Blond cutting lettuce with beautiful soft frilly leaves and a crunchy stalk.
Verde Ricciolina da Taglio: Long, lobed leaves dark green in colour. Similar to oak leaf lettuce.
Frisee D'Amerique: (Riccia Invernale) (curly winter). Cutting lettuce or grow to full size. Despite its name, 'Frisée d'Amerique' is an old French cutting lettuce which was listed in Vilmorin's catalog. Its delicate, tender leaves are flushed with red. In the category of 'winter lettuces,' it can be fall-sown for early spring crops, or sown as a spring lettuce.
Trionfo D'Estate: More closed than a butterhead lettuce but not as tightly as an iceberg. Has softer leaves rather than crunchy and is highly recommended for summer harvest.
Bionda A Foglia Di Quercia: Cutting lettuce of medium dimesions with upright, green wavey leaves.
Radichetta: also called catalogna. Rustic country lettuce. Early & cold hardy. Good resistance to bolting. Long thick stems green serrated leaf. Open head will grow to sixteen inches. Not bitter. Lettuce taste but has the texture and crunch of escarole.
Rossa Di Trento: A lettuce from the alpine city of Trento. Large green lettuce with red outer leaves.
Quattro Stagioni: This lettuce has very dark red edges. Round, closed head.
Unicum: Summer crunchy variety that tolerates heat and goes to flower late. Heads are big, firm and very tasty. Leaves are dark green with brown red marks. It is a domesticated Slovene variety
Batavia Bionda a Bordo Rosso 3: Late. Large round, firm head with red trimming on some of the leaves. Resistant to bolting.
Bionda A Foglia Liscia: Very Early cutting lettuce which grows again after cutting.
Bionda Degli Ortolani: Classic Romaine lettuce used for making Caesar salads. Upright, green head.
Biscia Rossa: Deeply incised and ruffled leaves flushed with bronze on this ancient Italian cutting lettuce. Deep red tips, green below, crisp & crunchy looseleaf. Like most early lettuce, it has a low/moderate bolting resistance, so grow in spring & fall.

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