I love growing my own food. This is post on growing and harvesting cucumber.
Cucumber are from the same family as courgette. Therefore to grow them it’s nearly the same care they need in order to grow them. Here is an previous blog post on growing courgette. They have a crunchy texture and mild taste therefore they are quite a popular vegetable to grow at home. They are lovely to eat in the summers hot day when kept cool in the fridge. It is a great versatile ingredient in the kitchen which has got many culinary uses. From salads to pickles and to add to drinks.
The plant tends to produce in glut when it gets established so for a small household all one needs is just to grow one plant.
Growing and harvesting cucumber
While it is possible to grow cucumbers from seed. Sometimes it is much easier just to buy a young seedling from the garden centre.
If sowing the seeds sow them early like in end of March or April and keep them indoors or greenhouse. Plant out till the risk of frost is over or wait till the soil warms up. To test if the soil warms up is to stick your finger in the soil till the second knuckle if stays warm then it’s good to plant out. Another tip is to wait the night temperatures stay constant at least 8 degrees Celsius every night. They can take awhile to establish as they like the warmer weather rather than the cold.
Grow them in a well drain manure compost. Water them frequently on hot days and constantly.
It is poosible to grow cucumbers in pots and indoors. Just give them the same care as you would as planting them outdoors.
Cucumber like courgette are prone to mildew when the plants are young try not to water on the leaves. Remove affect leaves and stalk lower ground leaves so as to improve circulation. Water the plants in the morning so as to let the moisture dry as the day goes by.
Treat them with a some neem oil, crushed garlic, or a combination of all of these with some washing up liquid and sodium bicarbonate.
Cucumbers are ready to harvest when they are fully grown to a desire size. It is possible to harvest young cucumber and make them into gherkin or french cornichon.