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Cucumbers are a popular vegetable crop most commonly grown in seedlings.
It makes it possible to get the harvest as early as possible, the plants are strong, strong, resistant to diseases.
The topic of our article today is cucumber seedlings: growing at home.
Planting subtleties: seeds, containers and soil
For growing seedlings it is better to use individual containers: peat pots or tablets, plastic or paper cups, special cassettes. The containers should be small, in too bulky pots, the soil can sour.
REFERENCE! Cucumbers do not tolerate transplanting well, therefore it is better to exclude the picking stage.
Plants grown in small containers will be moved to their permanent residence by transshipment, which will avoid trauma to the roots.
Cucumbers prefer light, nutritious soil with neutral acidity... Purchased soil will not work, it is poor in nutrients.
Ideal: a self-made mixture of garden or turf soil, old humus and sawdust. Humus can be measured with peat.
The soil is thoroughly mixed, for greater ease into it you can add perlite or vermicult... Garden soil is pre-calcined in an oven or microwave, this procedure kills harmful microorganisms and larvae of insect pests. For greater nutritional value, urea, potassium salts and superphosphate are added to the soil.
How to grow cucumbers from seeds at home for seedlings? Before planting, the seeds are sorted out and wrapped in cotton clothmoistened with warm water. After 3-4 days, sprouts will appear.
If transplanting into open ground is intended, the swollen seeds must undergo a hardening procedure. They are placed in the lower chamber of the refrigerator for 24-36 hours.
The prepared seeds are carefully planted in pots filled with substrate. Each container holds 2 seeds... The depth is minimal, no more than 1.5 cm. The pots are placed on a pallet, sprinkled abundantly with water, covered with foil or glass, and then placed in heat.
For successful germination of cucumbers need a stable temperature from 26 to 28 degrees.
We bring to your attention a video on how to plant seeds correctly:
How to grow cucumber seedlings at home?
When the sprouts rise above the soil surface, weakest removecutting it off with scissors or a knife. You cannot pull out the sprout, this can damage the roots of the remaining plant. So that the seedlings do not stretch out ahead of time, the temperature in the room drops to 20 degrees for 2-3 days. Then it needs to be raised to 22-24 degrees.
Cucumbers do not like drafts, daily temperature drops are not useful for them either.
Containers with seedlings are placed in the brightest place: on the windowsill of the south, south-west or south-east window or in close proximity to it.
In cloudy weather, additional illumination with fluorescent lamps is necessary. With a lack of light, the seedlings stretch out, the stems become thinner, and the leaves turn pale. Daylight hours for seedlings lasts from 8 to 18 hours.
TIP! To prevent the cucumbers from freezing, you can organize an impromptu greenhouse by covering the window glass with a film. The same film can be used to separate the window sill from the room, creating an ideal microclimate for seedlings.
An express greenhouse will provide the desired level of humidity, and the film near the window scatters direct sunlight.
A household humidifier, wet towels hanging on batteries, and periodic spraying of the soil, plants and air around them will help to increase the level of humidity in the room.
During the cultivation of seedlings in the container, add soil 2-3 times. In between watering the soil is carefully loosenedtrying not to injure the roots. A dense crust that forms on the surface interferes with normal air exchange.
A week before planting in the ground, the seedlings begin to harden... First, the window opens, after a couple of days the pots are taken out into the open air. These walks can take several hours. Hardening is carried out in good weather; plants must be protected from sudden gusts of wind and direct sunlight.
Watering and feeding
Cucumbers - very hygrophilous culture... With insufficient watering, the sprouts wither and wither. Water the plants every other dayusing only soft water: rain, settled, boiled... The ideal temperature is 22-28 degrees.
IMPORTANT! Cold tap water cannot be used; it can slow down growth and even kill plants.
The soil in the containers should not dry out, but the plants should not be poured either. It is convenient to use a teaspoon or a spray bottle to water the newly appeared sprouts. To care for the grown seedlings, you will need a fine-mesh watering can. It is recommended to water the seedlings in the morning., avoiding direct sunlight on wet leaves.
When the first pair of true leaves unfold on the plants, feeding is carried out. If the plants grow poorly, look lethargic and stunted, you can feed them earlier.
The most suitable option is a diluted complex mineral fertilizer intended for seedlings. You can make your own formula by including urea, potassium sulfate and superphosphate.
Organic gardeners use diluted mullein or bird droppings (1 part to 10 parts water). When feeding, it is important to ensure that the fertilizer does not fall on the leaves. If this happens, the seedlings are washed with warm water. After feeding, the cucumbers need to be watered abundantly. It is better to fertilize plantings in warm sunny weather., in the first half of the day.
The second top dressing is carried out before planting in the beds or in the greenhouse. If minerals were introduced into the soil when planting seeds, secondary feeding can be excluded.
Pest insects: how to protect cucumbers?
Cucumber seedlings can be attacked by pests: spider mites or aphids. As a preventive measure frequent spraying of the plant is useful clean water or a weak solution of potassium permanganate.
Landings are inspected daily. The detected larvae are washed off with a cotton swab. In case of severe damage, treatment with an insecticide in a spray is possible. Plants are abundantly sprayed, after 3 days the procedure is repeated. Learn more about the methods of dealing with aphids and spider mites.
Growing cucumber seedlings at home step by step with a photo:
Growing cucumber seedlings is a simple and exciting experience. Experimenting with planting timing, lighting and feeding, you can achieve great results. Young plants will be healthy and strong, they will well tolerate transplanting in a greenhouse or on open beds.
So, today we looked at cucumber seedlings: how to grow them healthy and strong? How to properly grow cucumber seedlings at home?
Explore other helpful articles on cucumber seedlings:
- How to grow properly on a windowsill, balcony and even in the basement?
- Tips for growing in various containers.
- Find out the pick-up times by region.
- The reasons why the leaves of seedlings dry and turn yellow and what diseases are they susceptible to?
Step-by-step video instructions for growing cucumber seedlings at home: