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Grow Cucumbers in the Backyard Garden Easily

Fresh garden cucumbers are tasty just sliced and sprinkled with salt, but they are also great for fermenting, canning and infusing. Perhaps the best thing about cucumbers is that, because they come in bush or pole varieties, you can grow cucumbers in the backyard garden easily.

Growing Method

Container growing: With oodles of large green leaves and small yellow blooms, cucumbers make a beautiful container plant. Bush varieties (read the label, it must specifically say “bush” otherwise its a climbing pole plant) can be grown in a container without support, whereas pole cucumbers must climb. Bamboo poles, tomato cages, or wooden stakes will all work for cucumber support. There are a number of pretty commercial trellises available. One of my favorite ways to grow cucumbers is to turn a tomato cage upside down, tying the pointy ends, making an upside-down cone. Anchor or bury the bottom of the cage so it won’t blow over, then plant a few pole cucumber seeds or plants around the base. They will climb around the cage making a beautiful, edible topiary.

In the ground: How do you get along with your neighbor? If you get along well and share a chain link fence, you might ask if you could plant a few cucumbers and let them grow up the fence. You should, of course, offer to share your harvest. Grow bush cucumbers in garden beds where space isn't a concern, or where trellising isn't possible. Provide a trellis, fence or tomato cage for pole varieties. Be creative!

Planting Cucumbers 

Prepare the area you plan to plant cucumbers by working about 1 inch of compost into the soil before planting. Cucumbers like warm soil, so wait to plant until the soil temperature is above 60°F to grow cucumbers in the backyard garden easily.

Transplants: Place transplants in the ground after the last chance of frost has passed. Plant pole varieties 36 inches apart at the base of a trellis. Bush varieties can be spaced closer, at about 18 inches apart. Check label spacing requirements, if it's available.

Seed: Plant 3 seeds about 1/2 inch deep. Use the same spacing as above, 36 inches apart for pole variates, 18 inches for bush.

Always water well after planting. Plant new seeds every two weeks for continuous harvests all season long.

What is your favorite way to eat cucumbers?


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