Lettuce Farming In Kenya

This article focuses on lettuce farming in Kenya. Lettuce is a leafy vegetable that is commonly used in preparing salads. It can either be eaten raw or cooked. It is one of the most profitable vegetables to grow in Kenya.

Varieties of Lettuce Grown In Kenya 

  • Butterhead.
  • Crisp head.
  • Loose leaf.
  • Romaine lettuce.
  • Chinese lettuce.
  • Summer crisp.

Ecological Conditions for Growing Lettuce

  • Lettuce performs best on fertile and well drained loam soil rich in organic matter and with a pH of 5.5 to 7.0.
  • Soil should have good water holding capacity.
  • Temperature of 12-20°c.

Propagation and Planting

Propagation of lettuce is by seeds which can be directly sown in the field or first raised in a nursery bed then later transplanted. The best way is to first raise the seeds in a nursery bed. The seeds take 3-4 days to germinate.

The seeds can be transplanted after about 4-5 weeks once the root system has developed.

The ideal spacing for planting is 30 by 30cm.

Fertiliser Application

To boost productivity and achieve optimum yields, it is necessary to apply foliar and basal fertilisers as early as possible.

During the early developmental stages of the crop, it is good to apply fertilisers that are rich in phosphorus. This includes DAP and TSP. 50kg of any of the fertilisers is enough for an acre of land.

Once you have applied DAP or TSP, wait for about 2 weeks then spray the crops with Lavender super starter or Goldchance superstart for the purpose of rapid root development.

Two weeks after transplanting, it is recommended to do top dressing with CAN or NPK. 50kg is enough for an acre.

Pests and Diseases Management

Common pests that attack lettuce include aphids, cutworms, diamond back moth and American bollworm. The pests can be eradicated using insecticides and pesticides such as kingcode elite, pentagon… etc.

Major diseases include damping off, downey mildew, leaf spot, bacterial rot, sclerotinia rot and lettuce mosaic. To control the diseases, you can plant resistant varieties and practice proper field hygiene.


Lettuce takes between 45-100 days to be ready for harvesting depending on the variety grown and other factors such as climatic conditions.

Harvesting is done by simply cutting the plant just above the soil surface. It should be done early in the morning as lettuce is known to wilt rapidly.

Lettuce is highly perishable. Proper storage measures should be practised after harvesting.

Market for Lettuce in Kenya

The demand for lettuce is high in hotels and restaurants where it is used to prepare salads or served as a vegetable.

There is also a ready market for lettuce in supermarkets, grocery stores and open-air markets located in different parts of the country.

Worth Check Out:

Zack Abuyeka

I am the third eye.My duty is to keep you updated of the current trends and events happening round the globe.