When to Plant Cucumbers? Growing Cucumbers Step by Step
Cucumber is one of the most commonly grown vegetables in private gardens. Although they are not difficult to plant, the process of growing cucumbers might be demanding. Inexperienced gardeners might have trouble with creating the best conditions for this vegetable. But if you follow all the rules about where and how to plant cucumbers, you will be rewarded with a bountiful harvest. There's nothing tastier than cucumbers from your own garden.
When to plant cucumbers?
Those who decide to plant cucumbers in their gardens face many challenges. One of the most commonly asked questions is: when to plant cucumbers? Seeds of this vegetable should be planted in small pots in the second half of April. The cucumbers begin sprouting after one to two months - that’s when the seedlings are ready to be planted in the ground, which should happen between the end of May and the beginning of June.
Growing cucumbers in small pots is a time-consuming endeavor, but it guarantees a good harvest. Make sure the pots are small enough, as transplanting requires being extra careful. When taking the seedling out of the container, try not to damage the root mass. Cucumbers will take root in the ground only if they are planted along with the soil they grew in the pot.
The number of cucumber seeds planted in one pot is another key element. 2 to 3 seeds is considered the correct number. If more than one seedling develops in one container, remove the weaker one.
When is it too late to plant cucumbers?
Growing cucumbers is strictly connected to a particular best time to sow them. This involves two methods:
- sowing directly in the ground,
- growing seedlings.
If you decide to sow cucumbers directly in the ground, begin the process between 15th May and 7th June. Remember to plant a maximum of two seeds per one hole. If both sprout, remove the weaker one so that the stronger seedling can fully develop. The time for sowing cucumbers can be prolonged until mid-June, but the seeds have to be already pre-sprouted.
Seedlings are another method, and in this case seeds should be planted until the end of April. Make sure to plant the cucumber seeds in separate pots - after they sprout and partially grow, you have to plant them in their final spot.
When to plant cucumbers for a fall harvest?
There is one more method of planting cucumbers. It results in a fall harvest. When to plant cucumbers if you want to pick them in autumn? The entire process is less popular than the traditional approach. The seeds should be sown into pots in a greenhouse at the end of July. The greenhouse allows for a quicker growth, so you can plant the seedlings in the ground by the beginning of August. If you plant the vegetables this way, you can expect harvest in fall.
Planting cucumbers in the ground
Planting cucumbers in the ground is not a difficult task. That’s why many people decide to grow their own vegetables, as they are tasty and healthy. Make sure to follow expert’s tips to ensure an excellent harvest.
You can plant cucumbers in the ground from mid-May until mid-June. Dig 1.5 to 2-centimeter deep holes and put 2-3 seeds into each. Thanks to this, you increase the chance for growth in that spot. If all three seeds grow, remove the two weakest ones, so that the third seedling has the best chances to develop.
Cucumber plant spacing
Are you wondering how to grow cucumbers and which rule is the most important for these vegetables? First, make sure to keep appropriate spacing - between the holes, as well as the rows of cucumber plants. A proper cucumber plant spacing between the holes is from 10 to 15 centimeters. Rows should be set 80-120 centimeters apart. Such spacing allows for a proper development of the seedlings. This results in a better harvest.
Growing cucumbers in containers
Growing cucumbers in containers is a convenient method for those who don’t have a chance to plant these vegetables in the ground. Thanks to it, you can still enjoy self-grown produce. The container should have a volume of at least 10 liters - the larger it is, the better. A too small box loses soil moisture too quickly. This affects the root system of the cucumbers, and, as a result, the harvest is less impressive.
How to grow cucumbers vertically on strings?
Growing cucumbers on strings is a perfect way to spare valuable space in the greenhouse. This method not only saves room, but also provides more light to the vegetable, uses less water and is more disease resistant.
When cucumbers grow, they produce a lot of so-called green mass. Make sure the support for the strings is durable and stable, as that’s where the entire weight of the plant is going to rest on.
Two 2-meter long stakes placed about 60-centimeter deep in the ground is the most common solution. 4 to 5 meters is the optimal spacing between them. The stakes are then connected with a steel wire at the top, and another one is placed about 15 centimeters above the ground. Cucumber plants grow along strings attached vertically between the wires. The possible spacing between particular cucumber plants on such a construction is 20-30 centimeters.
Growing cucumber on a trellis
Growing cucumbers on a trellis is a much easier task than the string system. You can purchase such a construction in a gardening store. Just like in the string system, cucumbers are guided upwards, so they can climb on the trellis. This saves space, but also makes harvesting easier. Additionally, cucumbers grown this way use less water and are provided with better lighting in comparison with cucumbers grown on the ground.
How to care for cucumbers?
When growing cucumbers, make sure to care for them properly. Cucumbers require regular and frequent watering. Morning hours is the best time for this. If you decide to water cucumbers in the evening, be prepared for possible fungal diseases.
- When picking a place for cucumbers, prepare a spot with indirect scattered sunlight. Direct, strong sun might burn the leaves.
- If you want a good harvest in your garden, remember to fertilize your cucumbers. Organic products are the best option.
Cucumbers - diseases, pests and dangers
Regardless whether you plant your cucumbers directly in the ground or in pots, they are vulnerable to certain diseases. A fungal disease - powdery mildew is the most common problem encountered when growing cucumbers. The disease is caused by a fungus and appears as light-olive stains on leaves. You can also note a grey powder on the bottom of the leaves - these are the spores of the fungus. The leaves gradually turn brown, and finally wilt. To prevent this dangerous fungus from spreading, one has to use an antifungal spray as soon as the problem is noticed. Use a product purchased in a gardening store every 7-10 days until the issue is resolved.
Other dangers you might face when growing cucumbers include:
- Corynespora cassiicola,
- cucurbit scab,
- black rot,
- Sclerotinia sclerotiorum,
Furthermore, bacterial diseases often appear in greenhouses, while aphids are a common problem of field crops.
When are cucumbers ready to pick?
Cucumbers sown in accordance with the schedule can be harvested in the first half of July. Harvest can last until the end of September. Note that cucumbers harvest time depends on their intended use as well. Various maturity stages are key depending on whether you are going to use the cucumbers for salads, or if you want to turn them into pickles. Small vegetables make the best pickled cucumbers. As for salads, the size is irrelevant.
📍 How to grow cucumbers in pots?
Planting cucumbers in pots and then transferring the seedling into the ground is a common method. Cucumbers in containers is a preferred solution for those who can't plant vegetables in a garden. Pots don't take much space, so you can grow cucumbers on a patio or a balcony.
📍 When is the last time to plant cucumbers?
Cucumbers are typically planted mid-April and then the seedlings are transferred to the ground until mid-June. You can also plan to harvest cucumbers in fall, which is a less popular solution. In this case, cucumber seeds are sown in a greenhouse at the end of July. The seedlings are planted in the ground until 10th August.
📍 Planting cucumbers - when to do it?
If you want to grow cucumbers correctly, make sure to follow the sowing schedule. There are two dates when you can plant seedlings in the ground - the second half of May and the first half of June. Temperature is very important when sowing cucumber seeds - 15°C is optimal.
📍 What is the best soil for cucumbers?
Before planting cucumbers, make sure the soil is well-prepared. These vegetables prefer humus-rich and permeable soils. The pH should be alkaline. To achieve this, you can lime the soil in the fall before the next cucumber planting season.
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