The first advantage is how easy it is to grow greens, lettuce,spinach, swiss chard, and so on. You can use them if you want to, but threre is no real need for cell packs, heating pads, or grow lights. Just toss those seeds right into the ground, water, and wait. Now how easy is that? Seriously?
The planting requirements of salad greens, greens, and lettuce are relatively simple. They are shade tolerant, so there are many places in my small yard/garden where they will thrive. They are compact, so the yield per square footage is quite high. You can plant them in containers on your deck. I have even planted some in a flower box on my deck so I can just step outside for a few clippings when needed. Though growing lettuce is very easy, Edward C. Smith in the Vegetable Gardener's Bible states that rapid growth is the tip to tastier lettuce. This can be accomplished by adding compost to the bed a week before planting the seeds and again to the surrounding soil about a week after germination. Simple enough.
Health considerations are very noteworthy. Aside from the beneficial nutrients found in lettuce and greens, they are very easy to grow orgranically so you are can be sure that you are not consuming pesticides. Because there is less time from garden to table, fewer nutrients are lost durng storage and transportation. And once again, there has been another E-Coli outbreak reported in four states: Michigan, New York, Ohio, and Tennessee. As of a couple of days ago, there were 23 confirmed illnesses, 12 hospitalizations, and 3 instancs of kidney failure.
On a more pleasant note, people are unnecessarily impressed when you host a meal and serve a salad made from your own greens. Or you show up to a pot-luck with a salad and casually mention that you just picked it from your garden. There is definitely a feel-good component to growing your own and feeding your friends and family. If plant in succession, you never have to run to the store at the last minute for some salad greens. You will always have a supply on hand to snip from.
Here are my first snippings of the season!