How to Grow Cucumbers in a Greenhouse
Cucumbers are a staple vegetable in most salads. Nothing tastes better than a home made salad and there are few things that taste better than your very own home grown greenhouse cucumber. Cucumbers are thought to have originated from India and are now grown in nearly every region of the world.
Preparation for Greenhouse Cucumbers
Cucumbers are very versatile and can been grown easily both indoors and outdoors. You can also do both, by starting them off in a Gabriel Ash Greenhouse and transplanting them later outdoors in the warmer spring and summer months.
Choose the right variety for the greenhouse. Some of the best cucumber varieties include Petita, Aidas, Carman and Danimas. These greenhouse varieties will get the best start if you use a propagator. Plant the seeds in the propagator then move them to the greenhouse once they are sturdy enough.
Ready for Planting
Once the seedlings have sprouted and are strong enough, sowing should take place in late February or early March for planting in a heated greenhouse or late April for an unheated greenhouse or frame.
Keep the compost moist. You should feed it if necessary. The best periods to plant out are in late March (heated greenhouse) or late May (unheated greenhouse).
Continuing Care and Tips for Greenhouse Cucumbers
Growing cucumber in a greenhouse requires a lot of care. However, there are a few tips and tricks you can use to make the venture successful:
- The temperature after germination must be maintained at a minimum of 60°F (15°C) (Ordinary varieties) or 70°F (21°C) (All-Female varieties).
- Keep the compost thoroughly moist but never waterlogged – little and often is the rule. Keep the air as moist and well ventilated. Spray the floor (not the plants) to maintain a high humidity.
- Train the stem up a vertical wire or cane. Pinch out the growing point when this leader reaches the roof. The tip of each side shoot is pinched out at 2 leaves beyond a female flower. Female flowers have a miniature cucumber behind them – male flowers have just a thin stalk. Pinch out the tips of flowerless side shoots when 2ft long.
- Remove all male flowers from Ordinary varieties – fertilised fruit is bitter.
- Feed every 2 weeks with a tomato fertiliser once the first fruits have started to swell.
You should never let cucumbers go without food or moisture. Other than this, if you take care of pests and disease, you should be able to harvest great tasting fresh cucumber from your Gabriel Ash greenhouse each and every season.
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