From Ecology Action
Question: After planting my garden, I find it physically impossible to fit so many lettuces in a row as is stated in all additions of the GROW BIOINTENSIVE manual. Am I missing something here?©
Answer: Thanks for the good question!
You don’t need to be concerned about fitting every one of your seedlings into a 100 sq ft bed.
Ecology Action has studied this carefully and years ago came up with the amounts given in Column H in the master charts on pages 85-126 of How to Grow More Vegetables. In determining the amounts we took into consideration the total area, the curve/shape of the bed (which adds more planting area), the nestling effect of offset spacing (because this increases the number of seedlings by about 13%) and how close to the edge of the growing beds plants are placed.
Once we did this, we came up with the maximum number of plants that might be placed in a 100 sq ft growing area, which once again varies based on the shape of each bed.
Thus, in most instances seedlings are left over once the bed has been planted. If there are more seedlings leftover, they can be given away to friends. When you have more seedlings than you need, be sure to select the best ones for your growing bed to facilitate better yields and healthier crops.