How to Successfully Grow Cucumbers in your Garden
My youngest daughter loves cucumbers. She enjoys them year-round but it’s always more fun to grow the veggies that you eat, isn’t it?
Growing your own cucumbers in the vegetable garden is a great way to enjoy fresh, crisp cucumbers right off the vine. It isn’t very hard to grow Cucumbers when they are grown in the right conditions. But you have to give them plenty of attention in the very beginning. Growing cucumbers is one of those vegetables that you have to get right from the very start because the flavor of the actual cucumbers changes with the care it receives and space it is grown in. You’ll first want to make sure you have all the gardening tools you need.
Use these tips to help you grow the tastiest cucumbers this growing season.
Know What and Where to Grow Cucumbers
Many first time gardeners keep their vegetables from being successful by not learning about the variety of cucumber they are growing and where it grows best. Most cucumbers grow in zones 4-12, so they are capable of long growing season growth well into the beginning of the fall. Make sure you don’t crowd them. Cucumbers like well-fertilized soil and plenty of growing space. A large plot that is filled with organic material at the start of the growing season is the perfect growing space.
Start Your Cucumbers Early
It’s best if you grow cucumbers from seed, but be sure you give both seedlings and transplants plenty of care early on. Slugs and other pests love tender cucumber shoots, so garden covers or mulch around the young plants are necessary. The seedlings quickly develop the shoots that will become the long vines that spread. Make sure that the area around each plant is clear of other plants and weeds. In the very beginning the plants need plenty of water, so hydrate regularly. Continue to keep them hydrated when they begin to grow fruit.
Providing for Growth for Cucumbers
Cucumbers are fast growers and they are capable of climbing, so you need to make sure that they have space. A sturdy vertical element for plants to climb up is essential. You can use twine to secure vines to garden fences and poles.
Encouraging Fruit and Harvesting
Once your cucumber plants begin to flower, your vegetables are about ready to bear fruit. At this point provide your plants with additional water on a daily basis to help it through the growth spurt. Ensure that fruit is growing on a bed of mulch, away from soft-bodied pests, or if growing on a vertical element, use fruit slings to help the plant bear the weight.
Every variety of cucumber reaches a different length. On average cucumbers are ready for you to harvest at four to six inches in length. When they are ready, you can use gardening shears to cut cucumbers off the vine. They need to be cut at a distance of about a quarter of an inch from where the cucumber is connected to the vine. Clean cuts leave the plant healthy for the remaining cucumbers that still need nourishment.
Ours are growing and we did start them from seed early on. We’ve got quite a few baby cucumbers that have already started to grow! The plants are ready to climb up the vine and hopefully bloom soon. I can’t wait to get that first one. I just know it’ll taste really good!