Cucumbers

Your own fresh cucumbers will taste so much better than anything you can buy. They are easy to grow. There are many different varieties. The most common are the long skinny edible peel (English) variety, the slicing varieties and the smaller varieties used for pickling. This vegetable does well in a container for all you balcony gardeners.

Botanical Family - Carurbitaceae/Ground Family

Location - Needs good drainage. Can be grown outside or in greenhouse.

Soil - Warm, rich sandy.

Soil Preparation - Dig in a few inches of or aged manure, lime (5 pounds per 50 foot bed) and seaweed before planting. Mulch with compost during the growing season.

Seed Info -

  • Seed Spacing - 6 inches apart
  • Germinate in soil temperature of 30 C.
  • Days to Maturity - 50-65 days

Planting times - Soak seeds then start transplants mid April; transplant at 4 weeks.

Planting Instruction - Add handful of compost to hole when transplanting out. Cucumbers need support, there are a variety of ways for staking . Most varieties are monoecious and produce both male and female flowers on the same plant. The gynoecious types bear only female flowers, so a few male-flowering pollinators are in the seed packet (you will need to plant all the seeds in order to get fruits). Both need bees to pollinate.

Companion Planting

  • Positive affect: bean, broccoli, cabbage, lettuce, pea, radish, tomato
  • Negative affect: sage

Watering - Need lots of water, deep watering rather than frequent sprinkles is best. If weather is warm water every second day if plants are in the greenhouse.

Weeding - Keep weeded when plants are small.

Disease & Insects - If diseased do not compost plants.

    Aphids – control when first appear, by spraying with water.

Harvest - When plants are 6-12 inches long cut the fruit with a knife. It you twist it off you may break the stalk which may kill the plant. Harvest in the morning when it is cool. Picking when young will encourage more fruit.

Storage - Best stored in the refrigerator wrapped in plastic. Fresh picked will keep up to a week.

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