Cucumbers are very sensitive to imbalances or changes in growing conditions and hence growers need to carefully monitor light controls, fertilizer salts, air temperature, humidity, moisture and other important factors that are imperative in the production of cucumber, especially in greenhouse conditions. Inattention to these details can result in decreased production and poor quality fruit, such as bitter tasting cucumbers.
Moreover, cucumbers are also sensitive to root disturbance. Hence, if you are planting only a few plants, sow seeds directly into the garden or into the individual plots to reduce root disturbance during transplanting. In two or three weeks after seeding, the plants get ready to be transplant into their permanent location in the greenhouse, if you are cultivating for large scale production. Proper crop density and bed space must be maintained in order to insure good air circulation and adequate light for fruit production.
Greenhouse cucumbers grow rapidly under optimum environmental conditions and food production begins just after 2 months of seeding. Temperature ranging from 75 to 80 degree F is required during daytime for good production of cucumbers. Temperatures lower than this can significantly slow down the growth rate and will be responsible for delayed harvesting. While higher temperature is only tolerable up to 85 to 95 degree F, temperatures above this may adversely affect fruit quality. Further, during night time, temperatures no lower than 65 degree F is desirable for it may slow down the growth rate and earliest fruit production.
Pruning and thinning is the next procedure that must be carried out to maintain a proper balance between the vegetative and reproductive growth to maximize production. Pruning of dense leaves regulates sunlight. Flower production depends on the amount of branch growth and number of leaf axils. On the other hand, fruit loads must be thinned to one fruit per leaf axil in order to stimulate vegetative growth.
Pest and disease control, fertilization, pollination, training, etc, are some other procedures that also need equal attention when it comes to growing greenhouse cucumbers.
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