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Encyclopedia > Iceberg lettuce
Iceberg lettuce field in Northern Santa Barbara County
Iceberg lettuce field in Northern Santa Barbara County
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Asterales
Family: Asteraceae
Genus: Lactuca
Species: L. sativa
Binomial name
Lactuca sativa

Lettuce is a temperate annual or biennial plant most often grown as a leaf vegetable. In Western countries, it is typically eaten cold and raw, in salads, hamburgers, tacos, and several other dishes. In some places, including China, lettuce is typically eaten cooked and use of the stem is as important as use of the leaf. Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1632x1224, 881 KB)Photographed and uploaded by User:Geographer Close-up of a iceberg lettuce field in Northern Santa Barbara County between Santa Maria and Lompoc, on July 31, 2005. ... Santa Barbara County is a county located on the Pacific coast of Southern California, in the state of California, just west of Ventura County. ... Scientific classification or biological classification is how biologists group and categorize extinct and living species of organisms (as opposed to folk taxonomy). ... Divisions Land plants (embryophytes) Non-vascular plants (bryophytes) Marchantiophyta - liverworts Anthocerotophyta - hornworts Bryophyta - mosses Vascular plants (tracheophytes) Lycopodiophyta - clubmosses Equisetophyta - horsetails Pteridophyta - true ferns Psilotophyta - whisk ferns Ophioglossophyta - adderstongues Seed plants (spermatophytes) †Pteridospermatophyta - seed ferns Pinophyta - conifers Cycadophyta - cycads Ginkgophyta - ginkgo Gnetophyta - gnetae Magnoliophyta - flowering plants Adiantum pedatum (a fern... Classes Magnoliopsida- Dicots Liliopsida- Monocots The flowering plants (also called angiosperms) are a major group of land plants. ... Magnoliopsida is the botanical name for a class: this name is formed by replacing the termination -aceae in the name Magnoliaceae by the termination -opsida (Art 16 of the ICBN). ... Families Alseuosmiaceae Argophyllaceae Asteraceae - Daisies Calyceraceae Campanulaceae (incl. ... Diversity About 900 genera and 13,000 species Type Genus Aster L. Subfamilies Barnadesioideae Cichorioideae Tribe Arctotidae Tribe Cardueae Tribe Eremothamneae Tribe Lactuceae Tribe Liabeae Tribe Mutisieae Tribe Tarchonantheae Tribe Vernonieae Asteroideae Tribe Anthemideae Tribe Astereae Tribe Calenduleae Tribe Eupatorieae Tribe Gnaphalieae Tribe Helenieae Tribe Heliantheae Tribe Inuleae Tribe Plucheae... Genera See text Lactuca, commonly known as lettuce, is a genus of flowering plants in the Sunflower family Asteraceae. ... In biology, binomial nomenclature is the formal method of naming species. ... Carolus Linnaeus Carl Linnaeus, also known after his ennoblement as , (May 23, 1707 – January 10, 1778), was a Swedish botanist, physician and zoologist[1] who laid the foundations for the modern scheme of nomenclature. ... An annual plant is a plant that usually germinates, flowers and dies in one year. ... A Biennial plant is a plant that takes between twelve and twenty-four months to complete its lifecycle. ... Chinese cabbage Swiss chard Leaf vegetables, also called greens or leafy greens, are plant leaves eaten as a vegetable, sometimes accompanied by tender petioles and shoots. ... A salad is a food item generally served either before or after the main dish as a separate course, as a main course in itself, or as a side dish accompanying the main dish. ... Hamburgers often contain beef, lettuce, onions, and other toppings in a bun. ... Tacos al pastor Plate of tacos A taco is a traditional Mexican dish comprising a rolled or folded, pliable maize tortilla filled with meat (generally grilled beef, picadillo, fish, chicken or pork), and optionally, a wide variety of vegetables and/or sauces. ...

A lettuce plant has a short stem initially (a rosette growth habit), but when it blooms, the stem lengthens and branches, and it produces many flower heads that look like those of dandelions, but smaller. This is called bolting. When grown to eat, lettuce is harvested before it bolts. Species See text. ...

Lettuce is used as a food plant by the larvae of some Lepidoptera - see list of Lepidoptera which feed on Lettuces. A larva (Latin; plural larvae) is a juvenile form of animal with indirect development, undergoing metamorphosis (for example, insects or amphibians). ... Super Families Butterflies Hesperioidea Papilionoidea Moths Micropterigoidea Heterobathmioidea Eriocranioidea Acanthopteroctetoidea Lophocoronoidea Neopseustoidea Mnesarchaeoidea Hepialoidea Nepticuloidea Incurvarioidea Palaephatoidea Tischeriodea Simaethistoidea Tineoidea Gracillarioidea Yponomeutoidea Gelechioidea Zygaenoidea Sesioidea Cossoidea Tortricoidea Choreutoida Urodoidea Galacticoidea Schreckensteinioidea Epermenioidea Pterophoroidea Aluctoidea Immoidea Axioidea Hyblaeoidea Thyridoidea Whalleyanoidea Pyraloidea Mimallonoidea Lasiocampoidea Geometroidea Drepanoidea Bombycoidea Calliduloidae Hedyloidea Noctuoidea Families About... Lettuces (Lactuca spp) are used as food plants by the larvae of a number of Lepidoptera species including: Angle Shades (Phlogophora meticulosa) Autumnal Rustic (Eugnorisma glareosa) Cabbage Moth (Mamestra brassicae) Common Swift (Korscheltellus lupulina) Garden Dart (Euxoa nigricans) Ghost Moth (Hepialus humuli) The Gothic (Naenia typica) Grey Chi (Antitype chi...



The wild predecessor of our modern lettuce, Lactuca serriola, can still be seen all over Europe and the more temperate parts of Asia. It is likely that it originated on the Mediterranean rim on rocky wasteland or woodland clearings. This ancient wild relative of the modern lettuce contains lactucarium, a narcotic similar to opium. The Romans took advantage of this property by eating lettuce at the end of a meal to induce sleep. World map showing Europe Political map Europe is one of the seven continents of Earth which, in this case, is more a cultural and political distinction than a physiographic one, leading to various perspectives about Europes borders. ... World map showing the location of Asia. ... Lactucarium is the milky fluid secreted by several species of wild Lettuce, usually from the base of the stems. ... Opium is a narcotic analgesic drug which is obtained from the unripe seed pods of the opium poppy (Papaver somniferum L. or the synonym paeoniflorum). ... The Roman Forum was the central area around which ancient Rome developed. ...

In earlier times the Egyptians held a similar view of the lettuce. However as well as a hypnotic or an aid to sleep, the plant was also linked with male virility. As any vegetable gardener will know the lettuce can bolt or surge vertically upwards. This combined with a milky substance they can exude when cut could have been seen as a symbol of the male phallus ejaculating [citation needed]. It is thought these Egyptian plants were closely linked with the modern day Cos lettuce and could have originated on the Turkish coast on the island of Kos. Port of Kos Archaeological site Tree of Hippocrates Roman amphitheater Kos town view Kos or Cos (, Greek Κως, Turkish Ä°stanköy, Italian Coo; formerly Stanchio in English) is a Greek island in the Dodecanese group of islands, in the Aegean Sea, which it separates from the Gulf of Cos. ...

With the vast number of lettuce cultivars in existence, it is near impossible to pin-point their exact origins. Certainly both the Roman and Egyptian lettuce continued to be eaten long after the two great civilizations started to decline. Many may have hybridised with the wild type serriola to make the modern sativa. This Osteospermum Pink Whirls is a successful cultivar. ... In biology, hybrid has three meanings. ...

It is certain that these ancient civilizations saw the plant as both an appetite stimulant and an aid to sleep. In ancient Greece this led to confusion whether to eat the plant at the beginning or the end of a meal. The physician Galen, from Pergamon, would eat the plant to allow restful sleep and allow him to study without 'mental churnings' the following day. Somewhat contrary to this, a century earlier, Rufus of Ephesos declared the opposite; claiming lettuce 'fogged the memory and prevented clear thought'. Ancient Greece is the period in Greek history lasting for close to a millennium, until the rise of Christianity. ... Claudius Galenus of Pergamum (129-200 AD), better known in English as Galen, was an ancient Greek physician. ...

One of the earliest records of the modern European lettuce was in a piece by Lucas van Valkenborch who showed clear depictions of modern butterhead lettuces in his piece 'Allegory of Summer'. Although it is certain that this type existed well before the artist's death in 1597.


Some lettuce cultivars
Some lettuce cultivars

There are six commonly recognised Cultivar Groups of lettuce which are ordered here by head formation and leaf structure; there are hundreds of cultivars of lettuce selected for leaf shape and colour, as well as extended field and shelf life, within each of these Cultivar Groups: vareity of luttuce A variety of lettuce. ... vareity of luttuce A variety of lettuce. ... Under the ICNCP, a Cultivar Group is a gathering of cultivars. ... This Osteospermum Pink Whirls is a successful cultivar. ...

  • Butterhead, also called Boston or Bibb forms loose heads; it has a buttery texture. Butterhead cultivars are most popular in Europe.
  • Chinese lettuce types generally have long, sword-shaped, non-head-forming leaves, with a bitter and robust flavour unlike Western types, appropriate for use in stir-fried dishes and stews. Chinese lettuce cultivars are divided into "stem-use" types (called celtuce in English), and "leaf-use" types such as youmaicai (Chinese: 油麦菜; Hanyu Pinyin: yóumàicài) or shengcai (生菜).
  • Crisphead, also called Iceberg, which form tight, dense heads that resemble cabbage. They are generally the mildest of the lettuces, valued more for their crunchy texture than for flavour. Cultivars of iceberg lettuce are the most familiar lettuces in the USA. The name Iceberg comes from the way the lettuce was transported in the US starting in the 1920s on train-wagons covered in crushed ice, making them look like icebergs.
  • Looseleaf, with tender, delicate, and mildly flavoured leaves.
  • Romaine, also called Cos, is a head-forming type with elongated leaves.
  • Summer Crisp, also called Batavian, which form moderately dense heads with a crunchy texture; this type is intermediate between iceberg and looseleaf types.

Some lettuces (especially iceberg) have been specifically bred to remove the bitterness from their leaves. These lettuces have a high water content with very little nutrient value. The more bitter lettuces and the ones with pigmented leaves contain antioxidants. Stir frying is a common Chinese cooking technique used because of its fast cooking speed. ... Beef Stew A stew is a common dish made of vegetables and meat cooked in some sort of broth or sauce. ... Celtuce (Lactuca sativa var. ... Pinyin (Simplified Chinese: 汉语拼音; Traditional Chinese: 漢語拼音; Pinyin: Hànyǔ Pīnyīn), also known as scheme of the Chinese phonetic alphabet (Simplified Chinese: 汉语拼音方案; Traditional Chinese: 漢語拼音方案; Pinyin: Hànyǔ Pīnyīn fāngàn), while pin means spell(ing) and yin means sound(s)), is a system of romanization (phonemic notation... Coronary artery bypass surgery is sometimes pronounced Cabbage(s). See also Cabbage car. ... Romaine lettuce Romaine or Cos lettuce (often called simply Romaine or Cos) (Lactuca sativa L. var. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ...


The largest lettuce head was one that weighed 11 kg (25 lb), of the Salad Bowl cultivar, grown by Colin Bowcock of Willaston England in 1974. The international prototype, made of platinum-iridium, which is kept at the BIPM under conditions specified by the 1st CGPM in 1889. ... Officially the pound is the name for at least three different units of mass: The pound (avoirdupois). ...

In the United States, 95% of all head lettuce is grown in California and Arizona. Official language(s) English Capital Sacramento Largest city Los Angeles Area  Ranked 3rd  - Total 158,302 sq mi (410,000 km²)  - Width 250 miles (400 km)  - Length 770 miles (1,240 km)  - % water 4. ... Official language(s) None Capital Phoenix Largest city Phoenix Area  Ranked 6th  - Total 113,998 sq. ...

The October 3, 1998 episode of the television comedy show Saturday Night Live featured a fake commercial for "KCF Shredders", a hypothetical fast food lettuce meal for hip hop Americans. The December 3, 2005 episode of Saturday Night Live featured a digital short touting lettuce "through good times and bad". October 3 is the 276th day of the year (277th in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar. ... 1998 (MCMXCVIII) was a common year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar, and was designated the International Year of the Ocean. ... Saturday Night Live (SNL) is a weekly late-night 90-minute American comedy-variety show based in New York City which has been broadcast by NBC nearly every Saturday night since its debut on October 11, 1975. ... Hip hop is a cultural movement that began amongst urban African American youth in New York and has since spread around the world. ... December 3 is the 337th (in leap years the 338th) day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Saturday Night Live (SNL) is a weekly late-night 90-minute American comedy-variety show based in New York City which has been broadcast by NBC nearly every Saturday night since its debut on October 11, 1975. ...

Lactucarium or 'Lettuce Opium' is a mild opiate-like substance that is contained in all types of lettuce. Lactucarium is the milky fluid secreted by several species of wild Lettuce, usually from the base of the stems. ...


Lettuce and in particular Hippy lettuce is a slang name for Marijuana. This slang term is quite odd because marijuana share few similarities besides colour. U.S. currency is sometimes referred to as lettuce, also because the only resemblance is the green colour. Species Cannabis indica Cannabis ruderalis Cannabis sativa Cannabis is a genus of flowering plant that includes one or more species. ...

References and external links

  Results from FactBites:
Crop Profiles (11132 words)
Iceberg lettuce seed is planted by the grower at depths of approximately 1/8 to 1/4 inches primarily on 40-inch raised beds with 2 seedlines per bed.
Iceberg lettuce is typically vacuum cooled at temperatures of 34 degrees F. Approximately 70% of iceberg lettuce produced in California is harvested into cartons either in a "naked" or "wrapped" form with 24 heads to a carton.
The amount of iceberg lettuce being harvested in the naked form is declining, and it is estimated that approximately 70 - 80% of all iceberg lettuce cartons harvested are presently in the wrapped form.
iceberg: Definition and Much More From Answers.com (2012 words)
Icebergs differ from other ocean ices: sea ice is formed directly from the freezing of ocean water; pack ice is tightly packed fragments of sea ice; ice floes are small, floating ice fragments that separate from pack ice; and fast ice is ice attached to a shore.
The interior temperature of icebergs off the coast of Newfoundland and Labrador is in the range of −15 to −20°C. Ninety-three percent of the world's mass of icebergs is found surrounding the Antarctic.
Iceberg B15, which calved from the Ross Ice Shelf in 2000 and initially had an area of 11 000 km², was the largest iceberg ever recorded.
  More results at FactBites »



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