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DEFINITION

Cucumber is a widely cultivated plant in the gourd family, Cucurbitaceae. It is a creeping vine that bears cylindrical fruits that are used as culinary vegetables. There are three main varieties of cucumber: slicing, pickling, and burpless

 

BEST TIME TO PLANT

Cucumbers are extremely susceptible to frost damage; the soil must be at least 18ºC for germination. Do not plant outside too soon! For an early crop, start cucumber seeds indoors about 3 weeks before you transplant them in the ground. They like bottom heat of about 21ºC

 

TIME FROM SEED TO HARVEST

Cucumbers, an annual vine, belong to the cucurbit family and are fairly easy to grow when given a sunny garden location with ample room and loose, well-drained soil amended with organic matter. When properly cared for and kept free of disease, cucumbers produce long, slender fruit that range in length from 3 to 24 inches. It is ready for harvest in 50 to 70 days from planting, depending on how you plan to use them

AMOUNT OF WATER REQUIRED IN SOIL

Water consistently; put your finger in the soil and when it is dry past the first joint of your finger, it is time to water. Inconsistent watering leads to bitter-tasting fruit. Water slowly in the morning or early afternoon, avoding the leaves

 

TEMPERATURES

Germination temperature: 16ºC to 32ºC - Do not plant until soil reaches 18ºC. Days to emergence: 3 to 10 - May germinate in 3 days at 27ºC to 32ºC. Germination may take 10 days or longer at cooler temperatures. Maintenance and care: Cucumbers are very sensitive to cold

WATER REQUIRED - HYDROPONICS

When irrigating (water or nutrient solution), apply enough to thoroughly wet the full depth of soil. This will ensure moist soil throughout the container and avoid salt buildup.

Greenhouse cucumbers grow quickly and should never be allowed to suffer from lack of water or nutrients

 

HARVESTING AND STORAGE

Cucumbers are best picked before they seeds become hard and are eaten when immature. Do not let them get yellow. A cucumber is of highest quality when it is uniformly green, firm and crisp.

Any cucumbers left on the vine too long will also get tough skins and lower plant productivity.

At peak harvesting time, you should be picking cucumbers every couple of days.

Keep them picked. If you don’t, as plants mature, they will stop producing.

Cucumbers are over 90 percent water. Store wrapped tightly in plastic wrap to retain moisture.

They will keep for a week to 10 days when stored properly in the refrigerator.

HEALTH BENEFITS

Cucumbers contain multiple B vitamins, including vitamin B1, vitamin B5, and vitamin B7 (biotin). B vitamins are known to help ease feelings of anxiety and buffer some of the damaging effects of stress. Cucumbers are rich in two of the most basic elements needed for healthy digestion: water and fiber

NUTRITIONAL FACTS

Cucumbers are an excellent source of vitamin K and molybdenum. They are also a very good source of the pantothenic acid. They are also a good source of copper, potassium, manganese, vitamin C, phosphorus, magnesium, biotin, and vitamin B1. They also contain the important nail health-promoting mineral silica