Growing cucumbers in your garden
- 20+ cucumber seed varieties
- Prefers full sun exposure
- Delicious and easy to grow
- Make your own pickles with cucumbers grown in your own backyard
Understanding the varieties and types of cucumbers
Cucumber, (Cucumber sativus) is a popular creeping vine plant in the Cucurbitaceae family that produces cylindrical fruits that are eaten as vegetables. Cucumber is an annual plant that comes in three types: slicing, pickling, and burpless/seedless. Within each of these varieties, various cultivars have been developed. Cucumbers are native to South Asia, but they now thrive on almost every continent, thanks to the global market for cucumbers. Wild cucumber refers to plants in the genera Echinocystis and Marah in North America, albeit the two are not closely related.
Cucumbers used for pickling
Cucumbers are used in a variety of culinary dishes, and are especially delicious when sliced, diced and eaten as salads. People even juice cucumbers! Pickling is an incredibly popular usage of cucumbers, provided the right cucumbers are used. All that you need to make pickles is pickling cucumbers, vinegar, sugar, brine, and spices.
Try growing Straight 8, Long Green Improved, Marketmore 76, Spacemaster—these are all known as Slicing varieties as they can be picked and eaten raw. Or jump on the pickling bandwagon and grow Boston Pickling, National Pickling, and SMR 58. Try our heirloom Lemon cucumber seeds or White Wonder for a variety that your neighbor's garden may not have. Our cucumber seeds are on sale, by the packet or in bulk!
What to know when planting cucumbers
When planting cucumbers, look for an area that receives full sun and has rich, well-draining soil. You can amend your soil with compost or manure prior to planting to enrich the cucumber's environment. You'll want to direct sow the seeds three to four weeks after the last frost in the spring. You can also start the seeds indoors four to six weeks before your last frost, providing you use a grow light and seed starting soil mix. Plant 1/2 inch deep and about one inch apart. Alternatively, you can create hills four to six feet apart, with six to eight seeds per hill. With the hill method, you will need to cut the three weakest plants once the seedlings emerge. Make sure to keep the soil moist. Because cucumbers are vine plants, the use of a trellis might prove to be beneficial.
For more information about planting, growing, and caring for cucumber seeds, see the Cucumber Seeds Planting Guide.