Growing cucumbers in a greenhouse

growing cucumbers in a greenhouse Blog

They always talk a lot about growing cucumbers in greenhouses and talk no less. Experienced gardeners promise big harvests, talk about the excellent taste of such cucumbers and try to convince everyone that they are right. However, a person who tried to grow cucumbers in open ground can say with confidence that vegetables will be tastier and more aromatic from open ground. And they should be used for salting and pickling. But more on that later. In the meantime, let’s try to figure out how to properly organize the cultivation of cucumbers in a greenhouse.

Greenhouse greenhouse – discord. If in polycarbonate greenhouses it is initially possible to achieve more or less constant temperatures, then in film-type greenhouses this will be problematic. So the growing conditions in any case will be different, as well as the yield.

Planting cucumbers in a greenhouse

planting cucumbers in a greenhouse

Practice shows that it is more convenient to grow cucumbers in a greenhouse using seedlings. Seedlings must be no older than 25 days. That is, if you plant plants in a greenhouse in mid-April, then in the second half of March, the seeds should already be planted.

In greenhouses made of cellular polycarbonate, the cultivation of cucumbers can begin as early as March. It is easier to heat them, the heat loss will be less, and care is not needed as thorough as in film greenhouses. By the way, polycarbonate greenhouses are good because seedlings can be grown not at home, but right in the greenhouse. This will reduce costs and avoid difficult temperature adaptation for plants – they will be hardened and immediately get used to low temperatures. True, in summer conditions it is unlikely that it will be possible to achieve good results in this way.

Growing cucumbers from seeds in a greenhouse is not a good idea. They grow poorly, are late in flowering, and many plants die. They rise frankly badly. Planting seedlings allows you to achieve great results, and the plants themselves will begin to yield earlier. Planting seedlings is carried out in such a way that each plant has enough space for good nutrition. If the soil is poor, then a gap of 20-25 centimeters should be left between the plants. With sufficient fertilization of the soil, it is enough to leave 15 centimeters.

Caring for cucumbers in a greenhouse consists in the timely loosening of the soil, ventilation and watering. You will need to do periodic top dressing with complex fertilizers.

Do not forget that there is a significant difference between growing cucumbers near the house and at their summer cottage. If you do not have the opportunity to constantly travel to the dacha and take care of your early greenhouse, then be sure to equip the room with a “drip irrigation” system that allows you to successfully grow cucumbers in greenhouses in the country. 

Proper watering is the key to a good harvest. But if it is not there, then the yield will obviously not please you. 70% of the gardener’s success is not good seeds, but care and timely fertilization. Even if you buy expensive breeding seeds, their “eliteness” will be nullified by poor care and non-compliance with watering regimes and humidity levels.

Humidity, watering and fertilizing

Cucumbers grow well where there is high humidity. Of course, drip irrigation systems are good when it comes to the mass cultivation of cucumbers and greenhouses in summer cottages. Although it will be a great help to a simple farmer. In winter and early spring (even at such a time you can grow cucumbers yourself in a greenhouse), watering should be done regularly. To do this, you can use only warm water. By the way, many diseases of cucumbers in a greenhouse are not caused by pests at all, but by improper watering! Plants turn yellow, wither, stop growing.

To increase the humidity inside the greenhouse, many hobby gardeners water the plants during hot weather during the day. The water will begin to evaporate quickly and the humidity inside the greenhouse will hang. And the temperature will rise with it. If in the spring this option can still be used, then in the summer – in no case. Leaves may get burned. And then do not be surprised why the leaves turn yellow, the plants wither and the ovaries die. Everything should be in moderation!

Watering in winter and spring is needed infrequently. Twice a week is enough. But in the summer, the greenhouse needs to be watered every day and only in the evening, when the air temperature begins to drop. In the daytime, you will simply destroy the plants, because there will be a very high temperature inside, which will negatively affect the general condition of the cucumbers. Do you want to avoid such difficulties? Grow a summer crop of cucumbers in the open field!

The soil inside the greenhouse is depleted very quickly, and therefore top dressing must be carried out regularly. Top dressing of cucumbers in the greenhouse is carried out 2-3 times per season. Manure and organic fertilizers that have been infused for 3-4 weeks are excellent for fertilizer. Cucumbers respond well to top dressing with rotted straw (finely chopped), sawdust, peat.

What else to feed cucumbers? It is fashionable to use young weeds as fertilizers. To do this, collect them, chop them finely and put them in a large vat or barrel, pour boiling water over them so that the weeds are completely covered with water, but do not float, and cover with a lid. It is desirable that the container is in the sun. You can feed cucumbers with this mixture after three weeks. Please note that only young weeds that have not had time to form seeds can be used. And if there is wheatgrass among them, remove it immediately!

Mineral fertilizers will not be superfluous. Remember that the root system of cucumbers is weak, and therefore strictly follow the dilution technique on purchased fertilizers. If top dressing is made with natural fertilizers, then it is enough to dilute them in a ratio of one to four, where there will be 1 part of fertilizer and three parts of water. 

Soil type and pest and disease control

signs of aphids on cucumbers

Be sure to pay attention to the type of soil. It must be breathable. However, frequent greenhouse guests ants do an excellent job with this task. On the one hand, these little insects do a good deed and loosen the soil, and on the other hand, they are still those pests! They willingly drink the juice of the plants themselves and keep entire colonies of “cows” – aphids – in greenhouses. Yes, yes, it is the ants who are to blame for the aphids attacking your greenhouse. They feed on the so-called carrion milk or honeydew. So where there are ants, aphids are sure to be found, which loves heat and high humidity. Periodic treatment of cucumbers with special aphids (for example, gravvertine, fitoverm, aktar – they are widely available on the market) will help to cope with this creeping scourge. Don’t want to use chemicals? An infusion of wormwood helps to cope with aphids, with which the plants are sprayed. You can treat the plants with an infusion of onions and garlic and other very fragrant herbs. There is another way – to plant lavender next to the cucumbers. I must say, a fail-safe tool!

The most notorious pests of cucumbers are aphids, spider mites and whiteflies. You can eliminate them with special preparations (for example, Iskra), or you can plant plants in greenhouses, which we wrote about a little higher.

Of course, the best way to get rid of aphids in a greenhouse is to expel the ants. Alas, this is very difficult to do. By the way, the ants themselves do not tolerate the pungent odors characteristic of thyme and lavender. So planting a few plants in a greenhouse will serve you well.

aphids on cucumber

As in the light permeable soils that ants like so much, cucumbers grow very well. But clay and sandy soils are not suitable for cucumbers.

Diseases in cucumbers are mainly caused by improper watering. Disrupted technology can also provoke disease. Before planting cucumbers in a greenhouse, it is important to prepare the soil and use seedlings, not seeds, for planting.

Fungal diseases and powdery mildew also often “attack” cucumber beds. These diseases can only be treated with chemicals.

Rules for the formation of a cucumber in a greenhouse

cucumber seedlings

After 12-16 days from the moment the seedlings were planted in the greenhouse, allow the plant to be fixed on a rope, wire or twine with antennae. The stem should be one and have several side shoots. In the sinuses, you need to remove excess shoots. This must be done at the level of 4 true leaves. The next 6 leaves may have shoots, but they pinch off the top.

Excess shoots need to be pinched so that the foliage is not too dense.

Planting cucumbers and some features

How to plant cucumbers so that they give a good harvest in a greenhouse, we have already described above. It is also very important to know how to form the stem of a plant, how to tie it up, how to pinch it, how to pinch it. It does not matter at all what varieties you use for planting. If the cultivation technology is broken, the yields will be small.

By the way, in greenhouses, varieties should be used in which pollination occurs without the participation of bees. For example, the early ripening parthenocarpic variety “German” is ideal for early cultivation in greenhouses. Cucumbers “Herman” are not whimsical in care, but they need the formation of a stem, pinching, pinching and garter. Why is it important to plant varieties without pollination in greenhouses of any size? The fact is that the temperature inside the greenhouses is high, and the bees do not reach there. When it comes to spring or winter growing cucumbers, then you can’t do without such varieties at all!

pinching cucumbers

The formation of the stem should begin after the appearance of 5-8 leaves. Then it is best to lower a rope, ribbon or twine from the top frame of the greenhouse so that the stem can cling and grow upwards. Some summer residents use sticks as a support, and lower the rope from above. It is not necessary to do this, but many summer residents themselves decide how to grow cucumbers so that they give good yields in greenhouses. Pinching is carried out in such a way that there are not too many ovaries left.

Under the conditions of an ordinary dacha, there is no reason to choose which stem formation scheme will be most convenient. Basically, they are needed in order to make it easier to harvest cucumbers in industrial greenhouses. Tying cucumbers in a greenhouse is necessary, but for this you do not need to reinvent the wheel and use complex schemes, change the design of the greenhouse, etc.

It’s important to know!

Growing cucumbers in a greenhouse is only reasonable for you if you need early harvests. In all other cases, it is more profitable and more efficient to grow cucumbers in open ground. The results are always much better, you do not have to puzzle over how to plant cucumbers, how to prune, how to pinch and how to form bushes. What about temperature and humidity? Keeping them in a greenhouse is incredibly difficult. If tomatoes feel great and grow, then cucumbers, when the temperature rises to 35 degrees, begin to lose their ovaries, do not give good harvests and … are bitter. Just non-compliance with the conditions of irrigation and the use of cold water provokes bitterness in taste.

Strange as it may sound, the less you touch your cucumber plantings, the higher the yields will be. A greenhouse, in any case, is not the best place to grow a large cucumber crop. In addition, greenhouse cucumbers are much inferior in taste to cucumbers that grew in open ground. Don’t believe? Be sure to check it out next year!

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