Cucumbers are fairly easy to grow if you follow a few simple basics. You can start the seeds indoors 2 to 3 weeks before the last frost date and get a head start on the season. To do this you should start your seeds and peat pots or other types of pots that you plant completely in the ground. This is because cucumbers are sensitive to root damage. Plant two to three seeds in each pot. You should then transplants your plants about one week after the last frost date into your garden. when you transplant your cucumbers, you should thin them to one plant per pot. Cut the ones you do not want so as not to damage the roots of the plants you’re keeping. If you choose to wait and plant your cucumbers outside. It’s best to wait until two or three weeks after the last frost date because cucumbers don’t like cold soil. You should plant them in rows about six inches apart with the rows being three to four feet apart from each other. You can also plant them in hills, plant five or six seedlings are seed per hill, and thin them to two or three of the best in each hill. The hills should be five or six feet apart from each other. If you want to save space, you can plant them on trellises, or if you don’t mind them growing into your lawn, plant them on the edge of your garden and let them grow out into your lawn and mow around the plants as they grow.
Cucumbers like warm humid growing conditions therefore do not plant them outside to early. They grow best in soil full of organic matter that drains well. If you have heavy clay soil you should add lots of compost. They do best in full sun although will do okay as long as you give them six to eight hours of sun per day. They do better in fertile soil so it is good idea to fertilizer soil before planting them, or you can use a spray on liquid fertilizer as the plants grow.
Cucumbers should be harvested when they reach the size you desire. For pickles you can pick them really small for midgets, or let them get bigger for a good crunchy pickle. The slicing cucumbers can be picked up at any size from fairly small (small ones don’t have to be seeded) to fairly large but all cucumbers should be picked before they start getting ripe. If you leave ripe pickles on your vines they will stop producing, because they will think they’ve produced the seed they need to reproduce, and stop producing new cucumbers.
That’s the basics about cucumbers, I hope you try some in your own garden. If you have any questions or concerns growing cucumbers please contact me at Contact Farmer Dave’s Garden.
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aka Farmer Dave