Growing cucumbers through seedlings: available even for beginners
Cucumbers are heat-loving plants, but they are grown almost throughout the territory of our country. In most cases, they are sown with seeds directly in the garden, but for the early production is quite popular and the preliminary cultivation of seedlings at home. To do this is not too difficult, seedlings are on the windowsill for about a month, the conditions in a city apartment are usually quite suitable for its growth.
For sowing seeds of cucumbers for seedlings, you must pre-prepare the seeds themselves, the soil mixture and containers in which the seedlings will spend a month of their life. As for the containers, everything is clear: you can’t grow cucumbers in common boxes, they categorically do not tolerate a transplant with a violation of the root system. Therefore, they require individual cups. Their volume should be from 300 to 500 ml; True, some gardeners grow seedlings of cucumbers even in egg shells.
And yet, to get high-quality seedlings, you should not be limited in the size of the cups. Their design should be such as to allow seedlings to be extracted without damaging the soil coma. Reusable cups with a retractable bottom are great in this regard, but they are ideal - peat pots that are buried in the garden along with all the contents.
Each plant has its own personal glass
Light, neutral in acidity, moisture- and breathable soil are placed in the pots. Since the matter may not reach the top dressing in a month, the soil should immediately contain a sufficient amount of nutrients. When growing a dozen seedlings, it’s easier to buy ready-made soil in the store, but it should be designed specifically for cucumbers. No need to rush to the cheapest options: unfortunately, in such packages they still often sell land “from the fence”. Soil from a serious manufacturer is not required to be additionally prepared.
In the case of self-preparation of the nutrient mixture, the best option is turf land, good compost, peat and sand (ratio 2: 2: 1: 1). Of course, there are options: not always in the farm there is everything you need. Sawdust is also used as components of the mixture, sand is replaced with vermiculite, etc. Good compost or humus have enough fertilizers, but if these components could not be obtained, any soil must be spiced with wood ash (a glass on a bucket of soil) and add about 50 g azofoski.
If the earth is taken directly in the garden, the soil must be disinfected. The easiest way is to generously pour a pink potassium permanganate solution a week before sowing the seeds. If suddenly it is not, you can replace copper sulfate. After drying to a comfortable working condition, the soil is poured into cups, placed on the bottom of a centimeter layer of drainage, and allowed to settle for a day.
Dates of planting cucumbers for seedlings
Calculating the optimal timing of sowing seeds in cups is very simple, but it is impossible to give a specific recommendation. From the moment of sowing the seeds until the seedlings are planted in the soil, 30–35 days should pass. And then it all depends on what kind of climate region we are talking about and where they are going to grow cucumbers: in a greenhouse or in unprotected soil.
If we talk about the middle lane and consider planting seedlings in open ground, then without fear you can do this only at the beginning of summer. So, seeds should be sown at the very end of April. If temporary film shelters are expected, everything can be shifted for a couple of weeks and sow seeds in mid-April. Well, if there is a good greenhouse, it will be possible to plant seedlings in it already in early May, which means that seedlings start about April 1.
In more northern or southern regions, the terms, respectively, are somewhat shifted in one direction or another. But in the south, seedlings of cucumbers are grown only for very early consumption of products: to eat cucumbers at normal times, they are without hesitation sown in a bed of seeds.
When to plant cucumbers for seedlings in 2019 according to the lunar calendar
Many gardeners check the dates of their summer cottages with the phases of movement of celestial bodies. Since about 1990, many newspapers and magazines, and later Internet portals, have published numerous lunar calendars that list favorable and forbidden dates for this or that work with a specific garden or garden culture. The trouble is that these dates vary greatly between different editions. Therefore, you have to analyze many sources and make for yourself some right decision.
For example, many sources refer to May 18, 21, 22, 23, 26, 27, 28, and 31 as favorable dates for planting cucumbers in 2019.
If you still want to link sowing with the phases of the moon, you should know that sowing cucumbers is recommended during the growing moon, closer to the days of the new moon. It is believed that during such periods, the growth processes of many crops are activated, which is good for both seed germination and the size of the future crop.
Growing cucumber seedlings
Since in many modern varieties and hybrids the first cucumbers ripen 33–38 days after emergence, the need for growing seedlings is often thought up. But if you want to crunch your own products as early as possible, at least a few bushes of seedlings will be prepared by our summer resident.
Unlike, for example, cabbage seedlings, which require cool rooms for growth, the cucumber feels good at the same temperature as a person, so seedlings can be prepared at home. But if there is a greenhouse or a hotbed nearby, to which there is daily access, gardeners prefer to grow seedlings in them.
We assume that we live away from the cottage, we visit it only on weekends, and therefore we are going to grow a dozen bushes in a city apartment. It is necessary to highlight for this the most lighted window sill.
Preparing seeds for sowing
Fortunately, cucumber seeds do not need to be bought annually: they retain germination capacity for 7–8 years. Moreover, fresh seeds are slightly worse than those that have been lying for two or three years: they have more "empty flowers". Optimum seeds at the age of 2–4 years. True, modern hybrids may not be all right, but this is a rather complicated story, like the story of how several hundred varieties and hybrids suddenly appeared on the shelves. Are they really so different from each other?
Therefore, the current summer residents are divided into two groups. Some people firmly believe that hybrids (F1) are many times better and plant only them, annually trying out all sorts of new products. Others, from year to year, grow old proven varieties and store their seeds from them, selecting for this purpose necessarily tetrahedral rather than trihedral seed plants (yes, if you look closely, ripe cucumbers are not quite cylindrical!). Which of the summer residents is right? It seems that the truth is somewhere in between. It is only clear that most hybrid seeds are sold ready for sowing, and you have to tinker a bit with your own first.
The entire list of seed preparation steps looks like this (but not all of them are required):
- Calibration This can be done manually: the seeds of the cucumber are quite large, and the most feeble ones are easily determined with the fingers. It is even easier to dip the seeds in a solution of sodium chloride (half a tablespoon in a glass of water), shake and wait 3-5 minutes. The weakest will pop up, they should not be sown.
The seeds of cucumbers are large, you can touch each seed individually
- Warming up. If you have just bought fresh seeds on your hands (or their origin is unknown), before sowing they should be held for a couple of days by the heating battery, which reduces the proportion of male flowers on which there are no fruits.
- Disinfection. For the seeds of reliable companies bought in a specialized store, this operation is optional. Hold your own seeds or from neighbors for 15–20 minutes in a strong solution of potassium permanganate. After this operation, rinse the seeds well with clean water.
A strong potassium permanganate solution, almost 1%, is required for seed disinfection
- Soaking in fertilizer solutions or growth stimulants. It is not a mandatory procedure, but some lovers use various drugs for this. The most natural - ash infusion or agave juice, diluted 5 times with water.
Epin and Zircon - one of the most convenient stimulants in use
- Swelling in water. Even those seeds that are not processed in any way, many gardeners try to soak at least until swelling before sowing. The seeds are kept in warm water for a day (from 20 to 30 ° C), after which they are slightly dried so that they are easily poured during sowing. This measure can accelerate the emergence of seedlings except for a day, therefore, it is also very controversial if necessary.
- Hardening. But this is reasonable. Although many scientists are not unanimous in this matter, believing that hardening of seeds to hardening of plants themselves is almost irrelevant. It does not make sense to plant seeds in a greenhouse, but this operation is popular for open ground. Hardening in the case of cucumber seeds is carried out by keeping the soaked seeds in a wet cloth in the refrigerator for 24 hours.
- Germination. This is done most often in wet sawdust until the appearance of the primary root - half the length of the seed. True, germinated seeds are harder to sow, but a couple of days is won.
Sometimes the matter is even brought to the appearance of leaflets, but it will be very difficult to plant such seeds
Is it possible to not do anything from the above list? You can, the seeds will sprout and dry, only a little later. Therefore, you need to choose only those steps that seem necessary in each specific situation.
Sowing Cucumber Seeds
Sowing seeds of cucumbers in cups with the soil mixture poured into them is not difficult.
- They put 1-2 seeds on the surface of the soil poured with water (how much it is not a pity: after all, other seeds are now sold even individually!).
Expensive seeds are sown one at a time: most likely, they have good germination
- They fall asleep with a layer of soil about 1.5 cm thick.
- Spray the surface from the spray bottle with water.
The gardener always needs to have the simplest spray gun on the farm
- Place the cups in any convenient tray, cover with glass or film and transfer to a warm place (optimally with a temperature of 25–28 ° C).
Glass will create a greenhouse effect and will not allow the soil to dry out.
The emergence of seedlings of cucumbers can be expected in 4-8 days, depending on the variety and conditions. A few days after this, the worst plants must be carefully removed, and preferably cut with scissors.
Care for seedlings of cucumbers
Before the emergence of seedlings, it is necessary to ensure that the soil does not dry out. Slightly opening the glass, slightly air the crops, and, if necessary, spray from the spray gun. The best place for seedlings of cucumbers is a well-lit warm window sill. As soon as the shoots appear, the glass must be removed, and the temperature managed to be reduced to 18 ° C, at night several degrees lower, and keep it for five days. This is the most difficult: by this time, as a rule, it is already getting warm, but if you do not find such conditions, the seedlings will stretch and will be very weak.
Subsequently, the optimum temperature is about 24 ° C during the day and 18 ° C at night. And - more light. If the sun is not enough, obligatory illumination with fluorescent lamps or diode lamps. Cucumbers on the windowsill need room, the bushes should not touch each other, so the glasses need to be moved apart from time to time. The rest is in the care of seedlings - as for any vegetable plants.
When the windowsills are over, tables are also forced to seedlings, but here you can’t do without lighting
Watering seedlings after emergence
Watering cucumber seedlings only with warm water (about 25 ° C). At the same time, the soil should always be slightly moist: any stagnation of excess water, especially in case of insufficient heat, will necessarily lead to decay of the root system. The frequency of irrigation depends on the nature of the soil and temperature conditions, but this should not be done daily.Recent entries In April, I process roses so that no pests encroach on my beauties
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After watering, experienced gardeners always pour dry, clean sand closer to the roots. It does not need much, just a millimeter layer: the sand, as it were, performs the function of mulch, and at the same time prevents decay of the lower part of the stem.
Often when growing cucumber seedlings do without feeding. If the soil mixture was made up correctly, cucumbers lack nutrients up to planting in the ground. Top dressing is needed only if the seedlings have stopped growing, the leaves have acquired an unnatural color, etc. Of course, this may be due to diseases (mainly from a violation of water and temperature conditions), but, most likely, food was consumed.
In most cases, it is enough to pour cucumbers with ash infusion. If there is no ash, use any complete mineral fertilizer (preferably with a trace element of boron). It is safer to apply foliar top dressing. To do this, spray the leaves of seedlings with a weak solution of any complex fertilizer (as written on the package). At the same time, the concentration of the solution must be carefully monitored so as not to burn the leaves. After any top dressing, the seedlings are well watered, not forgetting to add a little sand after that.
There is no place to take ash in a city apartment, so it’s worth stocking it up since the next barbecue since autumn
Is it possible to pickle cucumber seedlings
The picking of cucumber seedlings in the classic version (with pinching the central root) is categorically unacceptable. But sometimes you still need to transplant the seedlings into another container. This can be done no earlier than when the first true leaf is cut. Such a need may arise in cases:
- too small containers taken during sowing;
- very elongated seedlings;
- overgrown seedlings due to incorrectly calculated seed sowing time;
- diseases of seedlings.
In the first three cases, the transplantation is carried out by the transshipment method: after good watering, the seedlings are allowed to dry out a bit so that the soil lump “seizes” and the entire contents of the cup are transferred to a larger pot, adding ground. Since the root system is almost not affected, the probability of success is high; sometimes cucumbers do not even stop growth. With such a transplant, it is possible to slightly deepen the seedlings (especially if it is extended) by placing it in the ground with almost cotyledon leaves. Of course, after transplanting, it must be well watered and transferred to twilight for a couple of days.
In the case of the disease, the soil is also likely to be infected, so the plants will have to be replanted almost without an earthen coma, and the likelihood that everything will go fine is small. But gardeners often try to save seedlings in this way. After watering, it is carefully removed from the cup with a minimum amount of soil, but trying to keep the roots as much as possible. For such seedlings, care is required more thorough. For the first time, it is placed not only at partial shade, but also slightly increase the temperature. If everything went well, after a week the seedlings return to normal conditions.
Planting cucumber seedlings in open ground
Seedlings of cucumbers at home is not more than a month. From this time, the first few days it is kept at a low temperature, then in comfortable conditions, and in the last week they begin to accustom themselves to living conditions in the open ground. To do this, the seedlings are first taken to the balcony for 15-20 minutes, then the time of walks is gradually increased. But the temperature should not be too low, 10-12 ° C in the afternoon - this is already stress. By the time of planting in the garden, seedlings should be on the balcony for up to half of the daytime.
Good seedlings of cucumbers, ready for planting in the garden, should have at least three large dark green leaves and a powerful, but short stem. It is very good if buds have already been outlined on it (which, of course, does not happen with three leaves), as well as the antennae. But it is undesirable to open flowers at home.
Before transplanting into the soil, seedlings are well watered. Landing patterns are offered different, it depends on the variety, but thicken the landing should not be. Most often, cucumbers are planted in an ordinary way, leaving 40-50 cm between rows, and 25-30 cm between plants in a row. A denser planting does not always lead to an increase in yield, and vice versa. Naturally, the bed should be ready long before planting: it is well seasoned with fertilizers, primarily organic.
The time for planting cucumber seedlings in open ground is determined not so much by specific dates as by the state of the weather, and seedlings are resettled in the garden without shelter in the middle lane no earlier than the beginning of summer. They try to plan a landing on a cloudy day. The transplant process is simple:
- Before planting, loosen the bed again and level the soil with a rake.
Before the last leveling, the bed can be sprinkled with ash again
- In the places designated according to the chosen scheme, they dig a hole with a scoop a little deeper than the size of the cups with seedlings.
- As a local fertilizer, half a glass of wood ash and a tablespoon of azofoska are added to each well, mixed well with the soil and 1-2 liters of warm water are poured.
Often they dig even holes with a shovel to make more local fertilizers
- Carefully removing the seedlings from the glass, lower it into the hole. Peat pots are buried along with all the contents. Perhaps a small deepening of the seedlings, up to the cotyledonous leaves, but in this case they try to place it obliquely so as not to bury the root system too deep.
When the seedlings are good, they are almost not buried.
- Gently water the planting with warm water, mulch the soil with any loose material, and if the weather is not quite summer, cover the bed with spanbond or lutrasil for a while.
Planting cucumber seedlings in a greenhouse
Preparing a greenhouse for planting cucumbers is more difficult than preparing beds in open ground, and may include:
- Disinfection of the greenhouse, carried out in the fall. If there were no diseases, the soil is simply watered with a solution prepared from copper sulfate and malathion (1 tablespoon per bucket of water). If the disease raged, the entire soil is replaced with a new one.
- Filling the beds with fertilizers (in April). The amount of fertilizer in the greenhouse is even greater than in unprotected soil.
- Formation of high beds (up to 30 cm high) of convenient width (usually 80 cm).
- Heated beds a week before transplanting. The bed is watered with hot water with the addition of small amounts of mullein or bird droppings (1-2 handfuls per bucket of water) and covered with a film.
- Arrangement of trellises: in the greenhouse you need to save space. And if in the open ground not all gardeners grow cucumbers in a vertical culture, in a greenhouse this is a generally accepted approach.
The seedling planting itself does not differ from that in the case of unprotected soil and is possible when the daytime temperature in the greenhouse is about 20 ° C.
In greenhouses for cucumbers must provide support
Further care for cucumbers
In cucumbers, the root system is located at a depth of 5 to 25 cm. With increasing air temperature and in the absence of rain, the ridges dry out quickly, so cucumbers require regular watering with water heated in the day in the sun. Cucumbers are watered in the evening hours, usually every other day. It is best to water with a watering can without a strainer so that the water does not splatter and does not fall on the leaves. After each watering, the soil needs to be slightly loosened, and if necessary, plants should be pulled up. Constantly fighting weeds.
After the appearance of the fifth true leaf, pinch the plant to cause the development of side shoots, on which the bulk of the crop grows. True, for many modern hybrids, pinching is optional, but it will not hurt.
By the time the cucumbers begin to bloom, their first feeding is timed. Для этого берут нитрофоску (30–35 г на ведро воды) и выливают под каждое растение не менее стакана такого раствора. Вторую подкормку проводят, когда видят, что после дружного нарастания плодов плети заметно замедляют рост и угасает плодоношение.
Огурцы удобнее всего выращивать на шпалерах, но они не всегда сами лезут туда, куда хотелось бы хозяину, поэтому периодически надо направлять плети и иногда даже подвязывать их. Урожай надо снимать систематически, иногда это приходится делать и ежедневно. В противном случае огурцы будут перерастать, а новые завязи прекратят образовываться.
Не надо давать огурцам перезревать, иначе урожай будет резко снижаться
Болезни и проблемы при выращивании рассады огурцов
Во время выращивания рассады огурцов в домашних условиях необходимо выдерживать все правила с точки зрения температуры, освещённости и влажности почвы. Если же что-то было нарушено, возможны заболевания, иногда они заканчиваются и полной гибелью рассады. Так, вытягивание рассады нельзя считать болезнью, но её можно потерять даже из-за этого, вполне безобидного варианта, которого очень легко избежать. Иногда, чтобы не вытягивались растения, достаточно всего лишь вымыть окна.
Признаками того, что с рассадой что-то не так, могут служить:
- пожелтение листьев;
- истончение стебля;
- скручивание листочков;
- остановка роста;
- увядание листьев.
В каждом случае трудно точно установить конкретное заболевание, поскольку их может быть много, а признаки часто перекрываются. Весь возможный список выглядит внушительно:
- чёрная ножка;
- корневая гниль;
- белая гниль;
- мучнистая роса;
- белая мозаика.
Это далеко не все заболевания, и для диагностики и лечения рассады надо углубляться в литературу: в некоторых случаях можно попытаться спасти растения, но часто это сделать невозможно. Самые распространённые варианты, встречающиеся в домашних условиях, выглядят так.
Рассада огурцов падает и вянет
Это не всегда заболевание. Возможно, растениям просто не хватает света. Надо повесть над ними мощную люминесцентную лампу, и всё может прийти в норму. Возможно, подросшие кустики уже затеняют друг друга, тогда стаканчики просто надо расставить посвободнее.
К сожалению, причин увядания рассады очень много, но в ряде случаев ей ещё можно помочь
Конечно, увядание возможно и попросту при жаркой погоде и недостатке влаги, тогда рассаду требуется хорошенько полить. Иногда ей не хватает питания, значит, в поливную воду стоит добавить немного комплексного удобрения. Но и от избытка питательных веществ, как ни странно, возможна гибель рассады, поэтому переусердствовать в этом деле тоже нельзя.
В случае фузариозного увядания, то есть опасного заболевания, к сожалению, помочь уже не удастся. Но в любом случае можно попытаться пересадить ещё только начинающие падать растения в свежий грунт.
Почему желтеют листья у рассады
Пожелтение листьев также может свидетельствовать о целом комплексе проблем: от банального несоблюдения агротехники до опасных заболеваний. В домашних условиях чаще всего листья желтеют из-за плохого грунта, в котором элементарно недостаёт азота. Если это так, простое опрыскивание слабым раствором мочевины по листьям может спасти положение. Но пожелтение случается и не только из-за недостатка азота, а из-за неверного баланса всех питательных элементов, и здесь уже ничего без анализа не сделать.
Пожелтение рассады — не всегда болезнь, иногда ей просто не хватает питания
Пожелтение листьев возможно и из-за слишком низкой температуры, в особенности, в ночное время, а также из-за недостатка естественного освещения. Это устранить очень просто. Другие причины пожелтения рассады столь разнообразны, что осветить их в рамках короткого рассказа невозможно.
Как быть, если появились вредители
Наиболее часто встречающимися вредителями огурцов являются:
- бахчевая тля;
- галловые нематоды;
- паутинные клещи.
Однако в основном они атакуют растения на огороде, а домой могут попасть только с почвой, что невозможно при правильной подготовке к посеву. Дома могут обнаружиться и миниатюрные червячки коллемболы, которые обгрызают мелкие корешки рассады. В любом случае против вредителей эффективны различные инсектициды, наиболее универсальным из которых является Актара.
Видео: высаживаем рассаду огурцов на грядку
Выращивание рассады огурцов — не всегда обязательное мероприятие, к нему прибегают для получения более ранних урожаев. Поскольку основное количество огурцов можно получить и от прямого посева семян в грядку, для средней семьи достаточно вырастить не более десятка экземпляров рассады. Это может себе позволить каждый дачник, и сделать это совсем нетрудно.