gardenhive.com

GROW AND HARVEST CUCUMBERS

 There are indoor and outdoor varieties of cucumbers (Cucumis sativus). The indoor varieties can be grown in a normal greenhouse or cold frame. The outdoor varieties are best grown in a warm sunny area sheltered from cold winds. Cucumber plants can be grown in grow bags, pots or directly in the soil.

 To keep the cucumbers off the ground as the plant grows the plants can be trained up vertical canes, trellis or obelisk as shown in a later photograph on this page. To encourage the plants to grow strongly and produce flowers, pinch out the side shoots of the plant.

 Pinch out the tips of the top of the plant when they reach the top of theri support and when the indoor plants reach the roof of their housing.

Cucumbers
Cucumber plants grown indoors before going out.

 Cucumbers have a high water content so they need to be watered regularly. When the flowers have set give the plants a weekly feed of liquid Seaweed fertiliser as the cucumbers swell. With cucumber plants in the greeenhouse keep the humidity high by spraying the floor with water.

 Harvest cucumbers regularly from early August onwards as this will encourage the plant to continue cropping. When the fruits are 15-20cm long cut them from the stem using a sharp knife. Continue cropping the fruits until the end of August and early September.

 Crisp raw cucumbers are delicious to eat even more so when added to a salad or served as a crudite with a dip. Cucumbers can have hollowed out chunks filled with cream cheese or similar filling making a tasty nibble. Cucumber sandwiches are easy to make with slices of meat and other vegetables.



Cucumber in Sandwich

 To make the tasty sandwich shown in the photograph, margarine was spread onto a slice of brown bread and covered with a slice of ham. Discs cut from the cucumber were placed on top of the ham folowed by short sticks of red pepper. To finish the combination was covered with top slice of bread spread with margarine.


Cystal Apple Cucumbers

 As well as the familiar green cyclinderical shape cucumber there are other varieties such as the crystal apple cucumber shown in the photograph growing up an obelisk.