Sales in lettuce seeds rocket but shortage may just be tip of the iceberg

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Consumers are starting to grow their own lettuce after bad weather across Europe caused a shortage in supplies.

Shoppers have found some supermarkets have no lettuce on their shelves and the price of the vegetable has rocketed in shops that do have a supply.

Cardwell Garden Centre near Gourock, Inverclyde, said it has almost sold out of packets of lettuce seeds after sales surged.

Bosses at the centre say they have been inundated with requests for advice on how to grow lettuce both indoors and in outside gardens.

Cardwell horticulturist Brian Hawthorne said the lettuce shortage may just be the tip of the iceberg as courgettes are also in short supply after unusually cold weather in normally warm Mediterranean countries devastated the harvest.

He said: "In all my years working as a horticulturist I've never known so many people coming into the garden centre asking how they can grow their own lettuce and courgettes.

"I'd encourage people to grow their own lettuce, courgettes and other vegetables, as it's quite easy and anyway, home-grown veg always tastes better."