Garnet-colored lobed leaf lettuce gives a visual counter-point to green lettuces in the garden and on the plate. Tasty and ornamental. Slow to bolt.
Before modern lettuce ended up in salad bowls everywhere, it had a place as an aphrodisiac in pre-dynastic Egyptian ceremonies, cooked with eggs on the Roman dinner table, and in medieval herbals as a sedative and digestive. Now, it comes in a beautiful variety of forms, colors, and textures from smooth lime green leaves to red headings, to multicolored, smooth or crinkled leaves, with flavors ranging from a bracing bitterness to a soft buttery taste. While all lettuces can be harvested for loose leaf salad mix, romaine and butterhead varieties create folded heads for single head harvest. Nutrients: vitamins K (high), A and folate.