Lettuce Turning Purple - Knowledgebase Question

Modesto, CA
Avatar for ammend
Question by ammend
February 10, 1998
I sprouted Romaine lettuce with a heat cord in the vermiculite/perlite mix then put them under fluorsecent light when they came up. Some of them have turned purple and they are not growing. The light was about 6" above the young plants. What did Ido wrong?

Answer from NGA
February 10, 1998
Sounds rather perplexing. It's probably a reaction to the intensity of the light, and the tender leaves have become "sunburned". Six inches is a good height for the light - have you been turning them out at night? Seedlings require about 14 hours of light each day. Have you fertilized? A diluted liquid houseplant or Miracle-Gro solution should be given in place of regular watering about every two weeks. Try adjusting the growing environment with the above suggestions and see if that doesn't make a difference in the appearance and performance of your lettuce.

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