One of my favorite things to grow in the garden is cucumbers. They are so much better than store-bought. Here’s how to grow cucumbers vertically.
How to Grow Cucumbers Vertically
There’s not much that’s better in my opinion than a fresh garden-picked cucumber. I love the fresh taste and how juicy they are. The kids and I love cucumber salad with vinegar and we eat it daily all summer long when our cucumbers are producing. Grow cucumbers vertically for better production.
I like to leave the skins on the cucumbers if we grow them at home because there is a lot of nutrition in the skins. If we have to eat yucky store cucumbers, we always peel them because of that grody wax coating and whatever poison is lurking underneath it. Yuck.
Home grow cucumber skins are not as tough either. I like to harvest them smaller so they are super tasty and tender.Plant cucumber seeds after danger of frost has passed. Plant them about 1/4 inch deep 8-12 inches apart near a sturdy trellis.
Growing cucumbers in containers
Cucumbers grow well in the ground or in raised beds. You can even grow them in containers. Make sure your soil has plenty of compost or organic material. Keep the area well weeded to allow cucumbers plenty of water, light and room to grow.
Water cucumbers about 1-2 inches of water a week, just like most vegetable garden plants.
How long do cucumbers take to grow?
Depending on the variety, cucumbers will take anywhere from 50 days to 3 months to produce a harvest. Harvest cucumbers before they get too big. They will be bitter and hard to eat if you allow them to turn yellow and get huge.
Make a sturdy trellis and grow cucumber vertically. This will give you straight cucumbers and you’ll have fewer problems with pests from the fruits laying on the ground.
There are many materials you can use for a trellis. Lattice, tomato cages, hog wire, whatever you have available will work. Growing cucumbers vertically is not difficult, they train themselves to grow up whatever you give them.
For more info on how to build a really good trellis that will last for growing any crop vertically, see this video.
How to harvest cucumbers
Harvest cucumbers from your garden by holding the vine firmly and the fruit in your other hand. Twist the cucumber gently until it releases from the vine. Be careful not to damage the vine so you can continue to grow more.
If your cucumbers are bitter, cut off the stem end and peel them, the rest of the cucumber may be fine. If they are still too bitter, you can pickle them to take some of the bitterness out.
The most common pests of cucumber plants are the cucumber beetle. Growing healthy plants will help you have less damage from these pests, but you can also use some neem oil (in the afternoon and away from blooms for the protection of bees and other pollinators) on your cucumber plants to control overrun populations.
You can also use yellow sticky traps or knock them off onto cardboard and squish them. Cucumber beetles are very hard to catch. They can also be planted next to nasturtium flowers which will attract the beetles away from the cucumbers.
The beetles kind of look like ladybugs but have yellow, green or orange colors. They can be spotted or striped.
Cucumber beetles chew holes in the leaves and cause yellowing around the holes because they carry bacteria that destroy the plants.
Squash bugs and aphids can be a problem on cucumbers as well and can be treated the same way.
If you have any other problems with your cucumber plants, check this out.
Growing cucumbers vertically
If you end up with a bumper crop of cucumbers, you might need these ways to use excess cucumbers from the garden. Check it out.
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