Cucumber is a member of the Cucurbitaceae Family, Cucumber is a widely-cultivated creeping vine plant in the Cucurbitaceae gourd family that bears cucumiform fruits, which are used as vegetables. Cucumber has the following cultural practices.
There are many types of cucumbers, which can be categorized into three variety, Pickling, slicing and seedless varieties. The cultural practices of cucumber must be maintained to have a good and quality yield at harvest.
Although cucumbers do best in loose sandy loam soil, they can be grown in any well-drained soil which have good drainage and adequate soil-holding capacity. Cucumbers must be grown in full sunlight. Because their roots reach 36 to 48 inches deep, do not plant them where tree roots will rob them of water and nutrients
Cucumbers are very sensitive to cold temperatures. They can be easily injured by frost, and growth will be slow at temperatures below 50°F.Optimum soil temperatures for germination and growth are between 70 and 80°F
Cucumbers don’t perform well on acid soils but do well under slight acidity. The optimum pH is 5.5-7.0.
Many variations of plant spacing are used. The rows are spaced 4-6 feet to allow space for spraying and harvesting in trellised fields. Plant spacing within the row is 1-5 feet, depending on the number of plants per hill, and on vine vigor of the particular cultivar
Available soluble fertilizers may be injected through the irrigation system in place of sulfate of ammonia and muriate of potash. N levels of 200 ppm and K levels at 250 ppm in fertigation solution are recommended for maximum cucumber yields.
Cucumber requires a constant water supply to reach high quality and yields. Periods of growth when the plant is most susceptible to irrigation deficits include seed germination, flowering, and fruit enlargement. The frequency of irrigation is largely dependent on soil type and weather conditions. In general, for sandy soils with dry weather, the fields should be irrigated at least every other day if not more often at a rate of 1-2 inches per week
Duration from pollination to harvest in slicing cucumber is 15-18 days, and 5-10 days for pickling cucumber. Cucumber plants set fruit and develop over a long period of time, therefore marketable fruit are ready for harvest over an extended period of time. Size of marketable fruit for slicing cucumbers ranges from 6-10 inches in length and 1.5-2.5 inches in diameter. Slicing cucumbers should be fresh, crisp, of medium size, well formed, uniform and of a deep green color.
Cucumbers are picked manually. The fruit should be held near the stem and clipped or snaped with a slight twist motion and not be pulled off the vines to minimize “pulled ends.” Pulled off fruits leave an “open wound” where the fruit skin is torn off, and this causes the fruit to shrivel around this spot. The frequency of harvest is usually every other day or daily during the warm months, and 2-3 times per week during cooler weather or at higher elevations