Cucumber is an easy-to-grow and famous crop known for pickling as well as fresh eating. Low calorie cucumbers are a good source of potassium, anti-oxidants, and Vitamin K.
For soil, use a fertile well-draining potting mix that’s tailored for vegetables. Cucumbers are very sensitive to the cold. Make sure both soil and air temperatures have warmed prior to planting. For an abundant crop, provide full sun (6+ hours of direct sunlight per day).
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Plant seeds directly in the garden once soil temperatures have reached 70°F. Plant one seed every 6", 1/2" deep, thinning to 12" apart as seeds sprout. Rows should be spaced 5-6 feet apart for vine growth.
Alternatively, cucumbers can be planted indoors and transplanted into the garden once temperatures are warm enough. Plant indoors in starter pots or trays ~3-4 weeks before the desired transplant date. Transition outside (harden) for 7 days before outdoor transplant. Space 12" apart in rows, with 5-6 feet of space between rows for vines to grow.
Water slowly in the morning or early afternoon, avoiding the leaves so that you don’t encourage leaf diseases that can ruin the plant. If possible, water your cucumbers with a soaker hose or drip irrigation to keep the foliage dry.
Vining varieties can grow vertically with the help of a trellis or fence. This removes vines from the garden floor and can help prevent disease and save space.
If your cucumber plants do not set fruit, it’s not usually a disease but rather a pollination issue. Both female and male flowers must be blooming at the same time. This may not happen early in the plant’s life, so be patient. (Female flowers are the ones with a small cucumber-shaped swelling at the base that will become the fruit.)
Once fruit bearing begins, pick daily to encourage continued fruiting. Ripe fruits are uniformly green, firm, and crisp. Using a knife or clippers, cut the stem above the fruit. (Pulling the fruit may damage the vine.)