How to Begin Planting Cucumber Plants How to Begin Planting Cucumber Plants
When growing a vegetable garden, one of the easiest vegetables to grow from seeds are cucumber plants. Cucumbers do vine out, so if you are growing them in a small space, you will need to accommodate them by planting them near a fence or trellis and train them to start growing up. They are a very hearty vegetable, and you will get a good crop of cucumbers from just a few plants.
Step 1 - Choosing Seeds
There are several varieties of cucumbers. The type you plant will be determined by what you want to do with them. There are pickling cucumbers, which you can use to make your own homemade pickles, slicing cucumbers for general use in salads or eating raw, and oriental cucumbers, which can be used for both purposes. These are a unique looking cucumber with a slightly milder taste that grow very long and thin. After you have purchased the seeds for your purpose, you can begin growing them into plants.
Step 2 - Sowing Your Seeds
After the threat of frost, turn over the soil where you will be planting the seeds, adding in compost fertilizer. Then turn the soil again to get it into to ground. This will provide the cucumber seeds with the nitrogen that they need to get a healthy start. Make rows, and plant the seeds at least 2 inches apart to allow for plant growth.
Cover the seeds with light soil soil and water well. Your cucumber seeds are now planted. All you need to do at this point is keep the soil moist. Your plants will mature in approximately 50 days. When they get 3 inches tall, you will need to start fertilizing them.
Step 3 - Fertilizing Your Cucumber Plants
When the plants begin to bloom with small white flowers, you will need to add fertilizer to help with the growth spurt. The bloom is what will turn into a cucumber. Sprinkle fertilizer over the plants and around the base of each plants, then water to assure that the fertilizer reaches the roots. In addition to fertilizing, you will need to protect your plants from insects.
Step 4 - Using Insecticide
There are specific bugs that love cucumber plants, and they can be quite a nuisance. It is imperative that you protect your plants because cucumbers are very delicate. Sevin dust has been used for years and is very effective in deterring the pests that can eat your plants. It is available at most garden centers and even hardware stores. You will want to be careful not to inhale it, and wash your hands well after applying it to the plants. Sprinkle it over the plant making sure you get the leaves, stems, blooms and cucumbers. This is topical, and it is most important to get it on the above ground part of the plant. Repeat this weekly, as needed, until you harvest all of your cucumbers.
Step 5 - Harvesting
Cucumber plants will continue to bear cucumbers until the first frost. If you know that it is going to frost, pick all of the cucumbers left on the vines prior to it happening. After the frost, your cucumber plants will die.