Friday, 15 May 2015

Salad Days

Salad leaves and lettuces are something which I haven't grown much of in the past. As a family, we don't eat many salads yet last year, I found myself eating many more than I ever have done before so I intend to increase production this year.

Back in March I combined the seeds from half empty packs of seeds, or seeds which had gone way beyond their use by dates. There were various lettuce and leaves as well as chives. I sowed them very thickly in to a seed tray and I'm now able to cut these as baby leaves for salads.


I've also been growing some leaves for Sammy, Eleanor's rabbit. I bought a pack of living rabbit food seeds last year and they were such a hit that I'm growing them again this year.


Sammy can't seem to get enough of them, I'm not sure what the mix of seed is but there's definitely clover in there.


Incidentally, I wouldn't give a rabbit the mixed leaves I've grown for myself as there are some types of lettuce which can be harmful to bunnies. Also, some varieties are so high in water that they're of no nutritional value, so are not recommended.


You can see how much he enjoys this living rabbit food. This is what's left after a ten minute munch. Don't worry, he hasn't nibbled the plastic seed tray, it was already like that.


Since these photos were taken, his hutch and run have been moved back on to the grass for the summer months. He still gets let out to have a good run around, but it means he has access to grass to munch on whenever he wants.

32 comments:

  1. I'm with Sammy on the living salad, I grow it every year and for a few years have had a small plastic greenhouse inside the proper one and grown fresh leaves through the winter.

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    1. That's a great idea. I use my plastic greenhouse inside the proper one too, but only when I move my seedlings outside at the start of the year to give them a little extra protection. It's such a good idea to make it work through winter too.

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  2. We have a pet rabbit and she loves eating any form of living food! It must taste so much better and reflect their nutritional intake they would gain in the wild!

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    1. We give Sammy lots of vegetables alongside his usual rabbit mix but he goes mad for this living food, it must really tickle his tastebuds.

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  3. They've all grown well, and obviously got Sammy's approval. Flighty xx

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    1. I'm pleased with how well they've done. Sammy definitely approves, I should have got some more on the go for him before now but I've been a bit slack. That's a job for the weekend then.

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  4. Replies
    1. He's definitely a pampered bunny. He deserves it though.

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  5. growing your own salad leaves is such a money saving, I grow trays of tortoise greens for flash :-)

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    1. I think growing your own salad leaves must be much healthier too. Flash is obviously as pampered as Sammy is.

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  6. I just love salads ... and you can not beat home grown lettuce.

    Great to see Sammy tucking in ...

    Have a good weekend

    All the best Jan

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    1. I've never really been a lover of salads but I enjoyed lots of them last year. As well as these baby leaves, I've also got lots of lettuce on the go so I should have plenty to go at. Sammy loves his bunny leaves too.

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  7. I love the idea of living rabbit food. I wonder if it would be suitable for a guinea pig as well. I might investigate it. Fresh food is always such a treat, especially something a bit different. Wishing you a good weekend. CJ xx

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    1. They do a specific seed mix for guinea pigs as well as rabbits, it's Franchi Seeds which sell it. Look for Piccoli Amici. We always give Sammy fresh vegetables as well as his rabbit food but this is something different and he loves it.

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  8. Wow - 10 minutes to devour those greens - that little guy must be in heaven. Much like we are when we eat garden fresh greens vs. those "who knows how old" things from the grocery.

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    1. It's a case of how healthy supermarket salad is for us too, apparently it is washed in chlorine. There's certainly nothing healthier than home grown.

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  9. Sammy is a one happy rabbit!!! Wilson likes radishes so I try to keep him happy as well:) Have a nice weekend Jo!

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    1. Sammy lovely his leaves. I would have thought that radishes would be a little peppery for Wilson, he's obviously acquired the taste for them.

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  10. I like the idea of living rabbit food. I love to grow lettuces and salad leaves, but last three months there were no lettuces and salad leaves in my garden. The seeds that I have were not good enough. The quality is declined.

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    1. Lots of seed remains viable for years past their use by dates but there are some things which it's recommended to buy fresh seed each year for. I would have thought that lettuce seed could be kept for a number of years but your experience shows that it will only last for so long.

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  11. Sammy is one lucky bunny to have such a caring Mum! As usual, your garden is way ahead of mine, Jo. Still no sign of the lettuce I planted last week. P. x

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    1. I'm sure it's only a matter of time. Sammy loves his leaves, I'm really pleased I found this living rabbit food.

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  12. This year we are going to make sure we have some salad ingredients growing in the WoodBlocx raised bed. This way we can have salads to hand without having to remember to bring them from the plot. Unlike you we do eat quite a lot of salads.

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    1. I wouldn't even consider growing lettuce or salad leaves at the plot, there'd be nothing left after the slugs had their fill. I like to grow things like this in containers at home, but the WoodBlocX raised bed will be ideal for this, I shall look forward to hearing how it does. I ate many more salads last year than I usually do so I want to carry that on this year.

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  13. Jo, sorry but my comment has probably come through in my allotment society guise. Must remember to log out!

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    1. This is the only comment I've received. I checked the spam file but it must have been eaten by Blogger.

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  14. I went off home-grown salad after I found baby slugs among the leaves I'd picked from the veg patch. Now I've got planters on the balcony for bigger lettuce and trays for baby leaves in the kitchen. My seeds seem to stay viable for a couple of years beyond their sow by date, (Endah's comment), but heat would affect them adversely. Best to keep seeds cool and dark. Hope you're having a good weekend! x

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    1. Slugs and creepy crawlies put me off things too, that's one of the reasons why I grow them in containers, it tends to keep them much cleaner. Many of the leaves I've grown have come from very old seed, it was worth sowing them to see if they'd grow.

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  15. What a banquet for Sammy, he really is well looked after, and gorgeous to boot!
    Your young leaves look lovely, you can't beat home grown salad, I never tire of it!xxx

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    1. He's such a lovely rabbit, he enjoys the food I grow for him. I hope I can grow plenty of leaves this year, for Sammy and for us.

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  16. Glad Sammy is getting his fresh greens, we used to have a rabbit just like this though a female called Chloe but that was many years ago. Love the fact that you can grow fresh for your rabbits. Do they re-sprout again??

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    1. I think it's a great idea that there's seed mixes especially for pets. The tray in the photos above won't resprout as he's had a really good go with the leaves there, there's practically nothing left, but sometimes he won't eat so far down and then those will resprout.

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