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Homegrown Hillsborough
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Posted February 9, 2018 | 9:21 AM

Homegrown Hillsborough: Lettuce

Hillsborough County farmers grow more than 60 crops. Each month we will feature a seasonal crop, grown locally and available fresh in area groceries.

February's Harvest: Lettuce

Fun fact:

Lettuce has many health benefits, reducing risks of heart disease, high blood pressure, and some cancers. Darker lettuce leaves contain more nutrients.

When is fresh local lettuce available at groceries and farm stands?

Lettuce is harvested from December through April. Escarole, a slightly bitter member of the chicory family of lettuces, is available from November through April.

What types of lettuce are grown commercially here?

Head, leaf, romaine, and escarole.

Where is lettuce most commonly grown in Hillsborough County?

South County.

How many acres of lettuce are planted in Hillsborough County?

About 15 acres.

How much lettuce is harvested in Hillsborough County?

More than 400,000 pounds.

Local insight:

Lettuce is becoming less prominent as a commercial crop in Florida. In 2002, the state produced less than 1 percent of lettuce harvested in the United States. State agencies no longer estimate annual lettuce production.

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