Learn Everything About Growing Cucumbers Indoors and propagate this tasty vegetable on your balcony or windowsill!
Loaded with nutrients, cucumbers are rich in vitamins B and C, along with minerals like copper, phosphorus, potassium, and magnesium. If the lack of extensive gardening stops you from propagating this healthy veggie, here’s Everything About Growing Cucumbers Indoors you need to know!
- Botanical Name: Cucumis sativus
- USDA Zone: 3-10
- Botanically a fruit, but considered a vegetable
- Healthy veggies with high water content, copper, phosphorus, potassium, and magnesium
- Vines grow upto 2-3 feet tall
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Cucumber plant profile
Cucumbers are commonly identified as vegetables due to their culinary use, but these are botanically fruits, specifically berries, as these grow from flowers and contain seeds. A favorite for salads and beauty products, these veggies are made of over 90% water, making them excellent for hydration.
These creeping vines expand considerably with thin, curly tendrils for support. Growing Cucumbers Indoors is possible only if any corner of your house receives bright sunlight for a minimum of 6-7 hours daily. A bright and sunny Southern balcony will be an appropriate spot.
The best way to propagate cucumber plants is with seeds. Fill a starting tray with good quality, well-draining potting mix and sow the seeds in them. Cover with a thin layer of the growing medium. Keep misting the soil and place it in a spot that receives bright indirect sunlight. New seedlings will sprout out in a week. Grow only those that show healthy growth with bigger leaves.
As cucumbers don’t prefer root disturbance, starting the seeds in bio-degradable seed starting pots such as eggshells, citrus rinds, or paper cups is a wiser option.
Ideal Pot Size for Growing Cucumbers Indoors
Cucumbers require deep pots to thrive in their full glory; the more space you’ll provide for the roots, the better will be the fruit production. Grow cucumbers in pots 1-1.5 feet deep and 1 foot wide. You can also grow 2-3 cucumber plants in a 20 inches deep pot.
For growing cucumbers indoors, grow bags, jute bags, fruit crates, or fabric bags are good options. However, place the pots at a spot with maximum sunlight, as moving the large containers from one place to another can be a task. Do not forget to poke enough drainage holes in the bottom to avoid a soggy medium.
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Requirements for growing cucumbers
Cucumbers are adaptable to various types of soils. The ideal blend would be a mixture of loose, well-drained soil amended with a handful of organic compost. The ideal soil pH to grow cucumbers indoors is between 6.0 and 6.5.
Remember, the medium must be rich in nutrients but not contaminated. Good aeration will boost root growth, producing a healthier harvest.
Temperature and Humidity
Cucumbers grow well in warm temperatures and are known as warm-weather crops. The ideal temperature is 75-85 F or 24-30 C. Temperatures below 55 F, or 13 C will damage the fruits. Keep the vines away from cold drafts to avoid any plant shock.
Tip: If the temperatures are too hot, the plant will drop its blossoms, wilt, and stop ripening. Keep the plant at a south-facing sunny window, which can help the plant get an appropriate amount of heat from the sun.
The cucumber plant grows well under direct sunlight. It needs 7 to 8 hours of direct sunlight to grow best. For the plant to get enough sunlight, it is best to grow them at a spot that receives ample afternoon sunlight.
While growing indoors, you can also use a high-intensity grow light on cloudy days.
Cucumber plants require constantly moist soil. Water the soil sparsely when the seedlings are young and tender. Too much water will cause root rot. However, you may increase the watering as the plant grows up.
Always keep an eye on the top one inch of the soil, and don’t let it dry away. Keep tilling the soil surface with a fork or chopsticks, allowing the water to penetrate through the surface. Inconsistent moisture causes oddly shaped or poor-tasting harvests.
Cucumber plant care
Although cucumbers have a low nitrogen demand, ensure they have a lot of potassium and phosphorus, which is essential for their growth. While growing cucumbers in a pot, add a slow-release organic fertilizer to the potting mix every 2-3 weeks when the buds are out. You can also use a diluted liquid fertilizer or compost tea every three to four weeks.
Avoid using a nitrogen-based fertilizer as that will boost vegetative growth and not fruit production.
Pests and Diseases
The cucumber plant is prone to various diseases and pests like angular leaf spots, bacterial wilt, Phytophthora crown, root rot, powdery mildew, etc. To avoid them, follow an organic neem oil spraying session every week.
As you are growing cucumbers in containers, avoid overcrowding plants or overhead watering, which will lead to pest infestation.