Recently I planted a few large gardening pots with a heavy dose of mixed lettuce seeds. I thin out the sprouts every five days or so, gleaning enough to make a crisp, sweet lettuce-sprout salad that's not only precious and pretty but also much more nutritious than one made with mature lettuces.

I call these gardening pots Salad Bowls (actually my sister, Susie, coined the term). If you'd like to make your own Salad Bowls, fill a few wide, shallow pots with as many seeds as possible (lettuce sprouts don't really mind crowded living conditions). A single seed packet holds tons of the tiniest seeds, so it’s easy to scatter a heavy dose of them into each pot. The more seedlings, the more thinning, the longer the sprout season. You can grow Salad Bowls all spring on a sunny windowsill or on a porch. Get one going, there is still plenty of time!

Susie likes making Salad Bowls as spring garden gifts. She nurtures the sprouts until they are a showy 4-inches high, then gives them away in the pot.