Growing Cucumbers in Your New Garden

Cucumbers

Cucumbers

Growing cucumbers in your own garden can be easy and nutritious for your family. The rules for planting cucumbers are easy to follow and easy to do. Once your garden is prepared and ready for planting, (refer to past posts) you can follow these simple steps:

  1. Chose the seeds from your local gardening supply store. Different seeds are used for different things. Like for eating you might want the Burpless plants but for pickling you may use a Carolina cucumber.
  2. Plant as a seed in late Spring or early Summer, after the threat of frost. The cucumber seeds need warm earth to germinate.
  3. Stick them in about 1″ deep and 12″ apart
  4. They will take between 50 and 70 days till harvest, depending on the type of plant and climate.

Some of the natural enemies of the cucumber are beetles, aphids and bacteria. So watch out for these. Apparently, Pandas and Guinea Pigs are also natural enemies of the cucumber as shown in these videos:

 

When storing cucumbers, remember to always put them on the top shelf of the refrigerator, not on the bottom shelf or in the crisper drawer. It is the warmest part of the fridge. If they are put in the crisper, it is possible for ice crystals to form on the inside of the cucumber. Then when it thaws it may be mushy and wet. Makes sense!

Going Green 1: Planting Trees

Planting trees can be expensive and a lot of hard work, or we can do it the easy way. If you have access to a maple tree, you know that the seeds, or “helicopters”, are plentiful in the spring time. (Thanks to Wikipedia for the picture) 

maple seed "helicopter"

Maple seed or "helicopter"

  These seeds are easy and fun to show the kids how one of God’s great creations work. It is really something to show exactly how a seed germinates as easy as one of these helicopters. The easiest way is to germinate the seed in a wet paper towel. Once it opens up, it can be placed in a cup of dirt. Which reminds me of a friends science fair project…  

Keys to a successful tree:

  1. Catch some helicopters falling from a maple tree
  2. Germinate them, in the house, in a paper towel
  3. Once the seeds have started plant them in a cup of dirt
  4. Once the tree is started, and about 6 to 8″ tall, it can be transplanted to your favorite location outside.
  5. Then get a comfortable chair or hammock and watch it grow!
  6. Don’t mow over the tree by accident when mowing the lawn…
Tree Grown from Seed

Maple Tree Grown from Seed

My tree has taken approximately five years to grow about 30 feet tall from a seed. You will need to trim the lower branches from the base of the tree as it is growing to get a good looking backyard tree. If it is in the woods you may not care about this as much. 

A variation on tip number five is not necessarily sit in a chair for 5 years, but look out the windows every couple of months to see how the tree is coming. 

For more tips on growing seeds in paper towels, be sure to watch the last video for some other planting tips! 

 

Thanks Mayo Underwood for this great video! (From www.youtube.com)