To realize such a desire in life is not difficult. To do this, you need to know a few cucumber secrets that will help you get the harvest 1-1.5 months earlier than usual.
We plant cucumbers in a warm bed
In order to accelerate the warming of the soil in the spring and carry out the planting of cucumbers at an earlier date, you can go the other way – in the autumn to prepare a greenhouse or an open ground so-called warm bed. To this end, in September or October on the planned site you need to dig a trench depth of 1.5-2 bayonet shovel and fill it with organic “filling”.
- At the bottom of the trench first laid organic: small branches, stalks of corn, sunflower, bark, cardboard, chips, etc.
- Then there is a layer of fertile soil with a thickness of 10-15 cm and “soft” plant residues: grass, straw, fallen leaves, vegetable tops (except for pumpkin crops), kitchen waste of vegetable origin, spoiled vegetables and fruits, etc., and after — humus.
- To this add 1 tablespoon of nitroammophoska and 1 Cup of wood ash per 1 m 2 beds.
- Top spread fertile soil layer 15-20 cm, abundantly shed “filling” with water and cover with black film.
In the spring after the snow melts, you need to lift the film, slightly loosen the soil and pour the contents of the beds with hot water or mullein solution (1:10), and then return the film to its place. After that, organic matter begins to “burn” (that is, decompose and produce heat) and as soon as possible warms the soil, allowing you to plant seeds or seedlings of cucumbers on such a bed much earlier than usual. On such a warm “pillow” of the root system of cucumbers, spring frosts are not terrible, and it is easy to protect the ground part of the plants from them (when grown in the open ground): you only need to put an arc over the bed and throw a covering material on them.
To achieve faster warming of the soil in the spring, a warm bed can be raised above the ground to a height of 30-40 cm. To do this, the organic “filling” is placed not in an earthen trench, but in a box, which is built from scrap materials (boards, pieces of slate, tin, etc.).
Experienced gardeners, assessing the effectiveness of this method, build several such high boxes. Some boxes are used for planting vegetables, and in the other during the season gradually put vegetable waste, filling them to the autumn “stuffing” up to the top.
Prepare the soil in the greenhouse in advance
If you grow cucumbers in a greenhouse, before planting it is necessary to prepare the soil on the bed – update its top layer, fill with fertilizers and disinfect. Such work can be carried out in early spring a couple of weeks before the expected planting of cucumbers, so that the soil has time to settle.
But since early spring time to work with not yet thawed the ground (as well as humus and content of compostite) is quite problematic, it is better to move such procedures in the fall. So you will not “steal” from themselves precious spring days, which instead can be spent on a faster warming of the soil in the greenhouse, and will be able to plant cucumbers at an earlier date.
To do this, in the autumn after harvesting, disinfect the inner frame of the greenhouse and, according to the crop rotation, decide on which garden next season you will grow cucumbers. Remove the top layer of soil 5-7 cm thick from the surface of this bed and spread the fertilizers evenly: on a bucket of humus or compost, 2 tablespoons of superphosphate and 1 tablespoon of potassium sulfate for each 1 m².
If the soil on the site is acidic, add lime, chalk, dolomite flour or wood ash to the fertilizers. Then dig the bed of bayonet spade, close up the fertilizer with soil, and then liberally pour it with a solution of fungicide.
Choose early varieties and hybrids
To get an early harvest of cucumbers, you need to choose the right varieties and hybrids for planting. For this purpose, give preference to early-ripening varieties, characterized by increased resistance to adverse environmental factors.
Among them you will find specimens with fruits of any size – from short-fruited gherkins to elongated weighty beauties weighing up to 250-300 g, varying degrees of tuberosity and intensity of green color. And all of them will please you with excellent taste, delicious cucumber aroma and extremely high yield even in unstable spring weather.
Choosing a particular variety for planting, it is worth remembering that in the open field you can grow any kind of cucumbers. As for the planting in the greenhouse prefer parthenocarpic and self-pollinated varieties and hybrids, which form numerous the ovary without the involvement of insect pollinators.
Each of these simple techniques brings closer the moment of entry of cucumbers during fruiting, and which of them to use – you decide. And if you combine several of them (for example, plant seedlings of early-ripening varieties in the spring on a high warm bed in a greenhouse), then you will be proud to collect an ultra-early harvest of cucumbers at a time when your neighbors in the country will only begin planting seeds in the open ground.
Dear readers, what tricks do you use to get an early harvest of cucumbers? Share with us in the comments your secrets and tell us about the components of your “cucumber success”.