Proper cultivation of cucumber seedlings
Cucumber can be sown both in open ground and in the greenhouse. To increase the percentage of germination and protect the culture from late frosts, experts recommend planting it in seedlings. Growing seedlings of cucumbers at home does not take much time. If you know all the secrets of this process, you will be able to grow powerful and high-yielding plants.
Proper cultivation of cucumber seedlings
The first point that you pay attention to is the timing of sowing. To determine when to plant cucumbers for seedlings, the following points are taken into account:
- vegetable growing region;
- cultivation method (in a greenhouse or outdoors);
- remoteness of landings from the residence of the summer resident.
Cucumber seedlings should be protected from frost. Accordingly, the planting dates in regions with a long winter and cold spring will differ from the planting dates in regions where spring comes early. Do not take into account climatic conditions only summer residents, in the area of which there is a heated greenhouse. If the greenhouse is without heating, planting cucumber seedlings should be delayed.
The last point that you should pay attention to is the frequency of visits to the summer cottage. Those who live in the country or who have a garden located close to the house can plant early and mature plants. This risk is justified by the fact that if the temperature drops below 0 ° C, you can have time to save the landing. If the summer cottage is far from home, frost will destroy all the plants.
When planting cucumbers for seedlings in 2018, it should be remembered that the plants can not be in containers or cups for more than 30 days, so you need to decide on the approximate date of planting a vegetable crop before sowing seeds.
Much depends on the quality of the seed. It is best to give preference to hybrid varieties, most of which are resistant to cucumber diseases and are characterized by high productivity. Pay attention to the description and characteristics of the variety. There are varieties adapted to cold climates. They can be grown even in cold Siberia. And there are those that do not tolerate low temperatures. They are recommended for cultivation in the suburbs, Moscow and other regions with a similar climate. Seeds should be bought only in specialized stores.
Those who grow seedlings of cucumbers from seeds collected from the previous harvest should select the best specimens. Seeds should be large and not hollow. Instances with mechanical damage, various specks or other defects should not be used: most likely, they will not sprout. The best crop is obtained from seeds that have been sleeping for 3-4 years. Older seeds are not recommended.
Follow the instructions for growing seedlings
Consider a step-by-step instruction for growing cucumber seedlings with a detailed description of each stage. The whole process consists of 5 stages:
- preparation of planting material;
- preparation of containers for sowing;
- soil preparation;
- sowing seeds;
- seedling care.
Once you have decided when to plant cucumbers for seedlings, you need to prepare everything you need (containers or glasses, planting stock, soil). At the time of sowing, everything should be at hand.
Preparing planting material
This is the most important stage. Sleeping seeds need to be woken up. Do this with the help of heat and moisture or cold. The second technology uses fewer gardeners.
Some place planting material in a container filled with water. This is strictly prohibited. For the normal development of sprouts, oxygen is needed, and oxygen access to seeds in the water is difficult. It is best to place planting material in cheesecloth moistened with warm water and leave it for 24-48 hours in a room where the air temperature averages 26 ° C. The gauze should remain moist throughout the entire time. If necessary, it is sprayed with water at room temperature.
Seeds germinate using a self-roll. To do this, they are placed on toilet paper dipped in water and rolled up, then the seed-free end of the self-roll is immersed in a glass of water and covered with a plastic bag. This method of soaking seeds is quite new, it has not yet gained wide popularity.
Some summer residents recommend hardening seeds. This process helps improve cold resistance. Only non-germinated seeds are hardened, after which they are immediately planted in the ground. In this case, it is not possible to engage in seed germination. Choose either one or the other.
For hardening, the seeds are placed in gauze or a cotton rag previously soaked in water, and then placed in the refrigerator. Hardening is carried out at a temperature of from -2 ° C to 0 ° C. Keep seeds in the refrigerator for no more than 2 days.
Selection of containers for sowing
Sowing seeds produced in containers or in separate containers. Since picking is stressful for a given vegetable crop, it is better to use the second option. It can be plastic or peat mug. The advantage of peat cups is that they can be planted directly in the soil with plants, but they do not rot very quickly in the ground. If the cucumbers have a weak root system, it will not be able to break through the walls of the peat cup. This inhibits the growth of roots, which negatively affects the development of the plant itself.
The soil for seedlings of cucumbers can be prepared either independently or purchased in a specialized store. Light soil is suitable for growing cucumbers. It is prepared from sheet earth. It is poor in trace elements, because humus, superphosphates, ash and potassium sulfate are added to it. For 4 kg of leafy soil, the same humus, 100 g of ash, 5 g of potassium sulfate and 10 g of superphosphate are taken. All components are mixed. To make the soil more loose, add a little peat or sawdust to it, previously treated with boiling water.
The soil for seedlings must be prepared
In 2018, it is permissible to grow cucumbers for seedlings in peat tablets. They are 8 mm thick washers, which, when in contact with water, increase 5-6 times. Initially, a hole for seeds was made in each peat tablet. Before planting, the tablets from peat are soaked in water and wait until they increase in volume, then a sprouted seed is placed in each resulting glass and covered with peat, which can be plucked from the glass.
When choosing peat tablets, pay attention to the diameter. So that the seedlings of cucumbers do not outgrow the cup, its diameter should be 42 mm.
In each cup put one sprouted seed. Before the shoots appear, the cups with seeds are located in a room with an air temperature of 25-26 ° C. The minimum allowable temperature is 22 ° C.
To accelerate the emergence of seedlings, the cups are covered with a plastic bag.
When growing cucumber seedlings in 2018, it is necessary to observe light and temperature conditions and timely water the plants.
This vegetable crop needs a lot of light. With insufficient light, the seedlings of cucumbers are pulled up. Daylight hours should last at least 10 hours, if possible - 12.
For illumination it is best to use fluorescent lamps. They are economical and do not additionally heat the space. It’s not worth it to cover plants for more than 10-12 hours: an excess of light also negatively affects the development of plants, as well as its lack.
Weak and thin plants at first are watered only with warm water. Experts recommend using water at a temperature of 22 ° C. Running water is not used for this purpose - it is upheld for at least 48 hours. It is extremely undesirable to water the plants with boiled water.
After the emergence of seedlings, water is added at least 4 times a week, while not filling the plants. The soil should be moist, not wet.
As the cucumber vine grows, the need for water increases, as does the frequency of watering. If necessary, moisten the plant daily. After watering, do not forget to loosen the earth, otherwise the access of oxygen to the roots will be limited, which will negatively affect the growth and development of plants.
Since nutrition occurs not only through the root system, but also through the leaves, spraying is performed. Perform this procedure in the morning.
If the temperature regime is not observed, the plants grow poorly and stretch upwards. Until the first shoots appear, the temperature is maintained at 26 ° C in the room, after which the temperature is lowered by 5 ° C. After the appearance of all shoots, the temperature is maintained at 22 ° C on a sunny day, 20 ° C on a cloudy day, and 19 ° C at night.
If it is not possible to adjust the air temperature in accordance with the above standards, make sure that it does not rise above 25 ° C during the day. At night, so that the seedlings do not freeze, the air temperature is kept at a level not lower than 15 ° C. Since the landing is mainly carried out in May, there are no problems.
It is important to plant plants in open ground in a timely manner. Overgrown even for several days, seedlings are poorly received and bloom less actively than planted in the soil in a timely manner. If the seedlings have bloomed before planting in the soil, there will be no good harvest. No matter how much time is left before the cucumbers are planted in the ground, it is best to reseed them.
In order not to deal with the treatment of seedlings of cucumbers, it is enough to properly care for her. The appearance of plants will indicate problems. If the seedlings are thin and weak or grow too slowly, there is a risk of losing part of the crop. It is important to establish what negatively affects the development of the plant, and eliminate the problem. If all the norms are observed, and the plants are not strong enough, they are fed with complex mineral fertilizers. Sometimes the problem lies in overly close planting of plants, then they should just be planted.