Growing Cucumber

cucumis sativis : Cucurbitaceae / the gourd family

Jan F M A M J J A S O N Dec
                  P P P

(Best months for growing Cucumber in New Zealand - cool/mountain regions)

  • P = Sow seed

October: After risk of frost

  • Sow in garden. Sow seed at a depth approximately three times the diameter of the seed. Best planted at soil temperatures between 16°C and 35°C. (Show °F/in)
  • Space plants: 40 - 60 cm apart
  • Harvest in 8-10 weeks. Cut fruit off with scissors or sharp knife.
  • Compatible with (can grow beside): Nasturtiums, Beans, Celery, Lettuce, Sweet Corn, Cabbages, Sunflowers, Coriander, Fennel, Dill, Sunflowers
  • Avoid growing close to: Potato, Tomatoes
  • Cucumbers on plant ( - Rasbak - CC BY-SA 3.0)
  • Young plant
  • Female flower with baby fruit
  • Male flower

A trailing plant which will grow tendrils as it gets bigger. Cucumbers can be started in small peat pots then transplanted when weather is suitable. Lebanese cucumbers are best picked about 10 -12 cm (4 - 5 in) and eaten whole. Gherkins are usually picked 5 or 6 cm (2 - 3 in) long and pickled. They have a prickly skin. Apple cucumbers are round with a pale, almost white, smooth skin.

Grow in full sun up a trellis or framework to save space and keep the fruit clean. Needs ties to support it at first. Water regularly and fertilise to encourage growth.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Cucumber

Pick frequently before the fruit become too big.
Use raw in salads, peeled if preferred. Bash them with a rolling pin before slicing and marinade with a rice vinegar/fish sauce/sugar mix and they will absorb the flavours of the dressing.

Your comments and tips

05 Jan 24, Debbie (New Zealand - temperate climate)
Hi, I planted 2 Lebanese cucumbers last year and again this year. Both were/are healthy plants. Issue is..there are many female flowers (hundreds) and they just wither and die. Not a single male flower both seasons. Should I be planting a different variety of cucumber nearby to help with male flowers and pollination? Help!
04 Feb 23, dopey duck (New Zealand - temperate climate)
Tomatoes and cucumbers can be grown together successfully, and there are actually some benefits to planting them together. Both plants have similar growing needs when it comes to sunlight, soil conditions, and watering. And if space is at a premium, interplanting the two will allow you to get more out of your garden.19/07/2022. Always confused by planting guides comments would be interesting.I grow toms in a greenhouse start them feb march so they are up and flowering before the dead of winter and grow cucumbers also but as far away as possible it's 2.5 by 4 meters so it's not very far.S I asked mr google the question here is what he gave me. P.S.any tips on soil sterilisation of greenhouse soil My father used to dig out the entire contents every year to replant but that was a bit extreme I have used boiling water, peroxide with some success any other tips (you can't buy basamid anymore)
18 Dec 19, Natalie (New Zealand - sub-tropical climate)
First time planting and i put tomato next to it. What can i expect?
19 Dec 19, Anon (New Zealand - temperate climate)
I have just read on several websites that tomatoes and cucumbers are compatible. Don't grow near potatoes. I recently had tomatoes in one bed and cues in the next bed, beds 1.2m apart, beds 4.8m L x 2.5m W. Cues need space to spread out so don't plant close to other crops. Also consider if the tall plants will shade out the lower growing crop.
18 Dec 19, Liz (New Zealand - temperate climate)
In my experience, the tomatoes grow well but the cucumbers struggle .
19 Dec 19, Anon (New Zealand - temperate climate)
Tomatoes have a deep and wide root zone and would probably pinch most of the water and nutrients in the soil. Tomatoes need a lot of water and fert, cues far less. That is why I never recommend planting things too close to each other, give them the required area they need.
28 Nov 19, Judy Chisholm (New Zealand - temperate climate)
Why do my cucumber plants have some yellow leaves. I have given them general Fertilizer and also Worm team. Do I need to do anything more as I may have planted them a bit early. Also how do I tell the difference between a female and male flower.
02 Dec 19, Anon (New Zealand - sub-tropical climate)
If you put a lot of N on, the leaves would be dark green. If too little N then the leaves would be light green yellow. If too much N then it would burn and kill the plant. Worm tea is only a soil enhancer, gets the bugs etc going. It could be a deficiency of some trace elements in the soil.
04 Dec 19, Anon (New Zealand - sub-tropical climate)
If your soil is sandy and you do a lot of watering, then you would leach out the nutrients. Have to apply more fert.
29 Nov 19, anon (New Zealand - temperate climate)
Depends how old the plants are, if 8-10+ weeks then leaves yellowing off would only be natural.
Showing 1 - 10 of 25 comments

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This planting guide is a general reference intended for home gardeners. We recommend that you take into account your local conditions in making planting decisions. GardenGrow is not a farming or commercial advisory service. For specific advice, please contact your local plant suppliers, gardening groups, or agricultural department. The information on this site is presented in good faith, but we take no responsibility as to the accuracy of the information provided.
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