If you’re anything like me, then you love fresh cucumbers. Unfortunately, they can be a bit pricey at the grocery store. But did you know that you can grow your own cucumbers right in your backyard? I’ll even let you in on another little secret. Homegrown cucumbers taste even better than the ones that you’ll find at the grocery store! Growing cucumbers is really easy to do, and in this blog post, I’m going to show you how to grow cucumbers in your backyard. So, read on for all the details!
Types of Cucumbers You can Grow
There are two types of cucumbers that you have the option of growing. And choosing the right one for you may depend on whether you have a big backyard or plan on growing cucumbers in pots on your apartment patio.
- Vining-type cucumbers are the most popular type to grow. They’re called vining because they need a lot of space to grow and will often take over your entire garden if you let them. They can also be a bit more difficult to take care of, so I would recommend these for experienced gardeners.
- Bush-type cucumbers are perfect for small spaces. As you can probably guess from the name, they don’t grow as large as vining cucumbers and they don’t need as much space. They’re also a lot easier to take care of, so these are great for beginner gardeners and those that don’t have much space for growing.
I recommend getting the All-in-One Cucumber Variety Pack.
1. Choose a Location in Your Backyard
The first step is to choose a location in your backyard where you want to plant your cucumbers. Ideally, you should pick a spot that gets full sun for most of the day. Cucumbers need a lot of sunlight in order to grow properly. If you don’t have a spot that gets full sun, you can still grow cucumbers, but they might not be as big or as plentiful as they would be otherwise.
2. Prepare the Soil
Once you’ve chosen a location, it’s time to prepare the soil. Cucumbers like rich, loamy soil that drains well. If your soil is heavy and clay-like, you might want to consider adding some organic matter to it, such as compost or manure. This will help to improve the drainage and make it easier for the cucumbers to take root.
3. Consider a Trellis
Another thing to keep in mind is that cucumbers are vines, so they will need something to climb on. You can either grow them up a trellis or fence, or you can let them sprawl out on the ground. If you choose to let them sprawl, just be aware that they will take up a lot of space.
4. Plant the Seeds or Starts
Once the soil is prepared, you can plant the cucumber seeds or start. If you’re planting seeds, sow them about 1/2 inch deep and space them about 2 inches apart. If you’re planting starts, space them about 6 inches apart. Cucumbers are fast-growing plants, so they should start to sprout within a week or two. This is an important step in learning how to plant cucumbers in your backyard.
5. Add Mulch Around Your Plants
Adding a layer of mulch around your cucumber plants will help to keep the soil moist and prevent weeds from growing. I like to use straw or shredded leaves for my cucumber plants.
6. Water Regularly
Cucumbers need to be watered regularly, especially when they are young plants. Be sure to check the soil often, and water it whenever it feels dry to the touch. Once the cucumbers start to develop, you can cut back on the watering a bit, but be sure not to let the plants get too dry.
7. Fertilize as Needed
Cucumbers are heavy feeders, so you might need to fertilize them every few weeks. A good rule of thumb is to use about 1/2 pound of fertilizer per 100 square feet of planting space. Be sure to follow the directions on the fertilizer package, as too much fertilizer can burn the plants.
8. Keep an Eye Out for Pests
Insects like aphids and striped cucumber beetles can do a lot of damage to your cucumber plants if left alone. So be sure to check your plants regularly and remove any pests you see. You can also use row covers or insecticidal soap to help control these pests. Disease is another thing to watch out for with your cucumber plants. Powdery mildew and downy mildew are two common problems. These can be controlled by using fungicides or by planting resistant varieties.
9. Harvest the Cucumbers
Your cucumbers should be ready for harvest about 60 to 70 days after planting. You’ll know they’re ready when they’re soft when you slightly pinch the cucumber. You can start harvesting cucumbers when they are about 6 inches long. Just cut them off the vine with a sharp knife or pruning shears. The more cucumbers you harvest, the more the plants will produce, so don’t be afraid to pick them often!
10. Tools Needed to Harvest Cucumbers
- Sharp knife or pruning shears – You need a sharp knife to cleanly cut the cucumbers from the vine.
- Bucket or bowl – A container to store the cucumbers in while you’re harvesting them.
- Washcloth – Used to clean the cucumbers before storing them.
- Refrigerator – Cucumbers should be stored in the fridge to keep them fresh.
How to Store Cucumbers
When stored properly cucumbers can last for up to two weeks. To store cucumbers, wrap them individually in plastic wrap and then place them in the crisper drawer of your fridge. Check on them every few days and remove any that start to spoil. That’s all there is to it! Growing cucumbers is really easy, and you can enjoy fresh, homegrown cucumbers all summer long. Give it a try!
More Gardening Tips
I hope you enjoyed this post on how to grow cucumbers in your backyard. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave them below. Do you have any tips on how to grow cucumbers in your backyard?