When it comes to selecting the best cucumber plants to grow this year, success really boils down to finding the right plants for your space and needs.
Cucumbers are one of the tastiest crops a gardener can grow. And one of the more popular plants too. In fact, cucumbers rank second only behind the beloved tomato for the most at-home grown vegetable plant.
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But not all cucumber plant varieties are the same. And knowing which is the best plant or plants to fit your needs is an important part of cucumber growing success.
Selecting The Right Cucumber Plant To Grow – Vining vs. Bush Cucumbers
Cucumbers can be grown in everything from a traditional garden setting to raised beds, containers and even straw bales. But where and how you grow will determine the variety you need to select. See : Growing Cucumbers In Straw Bales
There are two main types of cucumber plants, vining and bush. Vining varieties of cucumbers send out long trailing vines from the main stem. And can they ever grow! Some vining cucumbers send shoots that grow in excess of 10 to 15 feet long.
To perform at their best, vining varieties of cucumbers need to have some type of support such as a trellis or fence. This helps to keep vines and fruit off of the ground, and allows for a healthier more productive plant. When growing in containers,vines can also be allowed to spill over the top to hang down.
Bush varieties on the other hand stay compact in nature, growing their foliage and fruit in an upright fashion. Bush varieties are often the more popular choice for traditional and raised bed gardens, due to the fact that they can be controlled more easily in rows or set spaces.
But selecting the right cucumber goes beyond just selecting a bush or vining type of cucumber. It also depends on what you want to use your cucumbers for – making pickles, fresh eating ,or both!
Pickling Cucumbers vs. Slicing Cucumbers – Growing Cucumber Plants
In addition to the two style of cucumbers, there are two main types of cucumber varieties – pickling cucumbers, and slicing cucumbers.
Pickling cucumbers tend to be smaller in size, and have a more compact seed core. As the name implies, they the perfect cucumber plant to grow if your goal is making pickles.
Slicing cucumbers on the other hand tend to be larger and longer in size. Slicers are the way to go if your aim is having cucumbers for fresh eating and salads.
So with all of those options to keep in mind, we thought we would cover all of the bases with 3 great varieties to grow. One that is great for fresh eating, one for making pickles, and with the Spacemaster Bush Pickle, one that can do both!
3 Great Cucumber Plants To Grow This Year
The Spacemaster Bush Pickle
This Spacemaster Bush pickle is one of the best all-around multi-purpose cucumber plants to grow in the home garden. Not only does it produce a large harvest of cucumbers, it can actually be used as both a pickling cucumber when picked young, or allowed to grow a bit larger for a slicing cucumber.
Plants stay small and compact, usually around 24 to 36 inches in height. They grow equally well in a traditional garden or in containers, making them perfect for patio planters when space is an issue. Seed Link : Spacemaster Pickle Seeds
The Straight Eight cucumber is a sweet, tender and delicious slicing cucumber. It contains a small seed cavity, making it the cucumber plant to grow for eating and using in salads. And does it ever produce!
Fruits grow 6 to 8 inches in length with a dark green skin. They mature around 55 to 60 days. Seed Link : Straight Eight Cucumber Seeds
Boston Pickling Cucumber
The Boston Pickling Cucumber is a seedless variety with outstanding flavor. It has origins that date back to the late 1800’s in Boston. This heirloom variety remains a pickle-making favorite today. The cucumbers grow to near 3″ in length when mature.
It produces mature cucumbers in as little as 50 to 55 days. Even better, it continues flowering and bearing as long as you continue picking the cucumbers. Seed Link : Boston Pickling Cucumber Seeds
For more information on the best cucumber plants to grow, check out our article How To Grow Your Best Crop of Cucumbers Ever. Here is to growing some delicious cucumbers this year, no matter if it is in your backyard garden, or on your patio!
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