Sliced ​​cucumbers: the important thing to wholesome vines

Nothing says summer like local, crispy cucumbers. This delicious fruit is backed by months of care, protection and, above all, pruning cucumbers. Without a proper cucumber cut, your vines cannot grow and produce fruit. In this article we answer all your questions about pruning cucumber plants – and more!

Before we start, you need to know how cucumber vines grow. There is a main trunk that has knots or joints along its length. A leaf, a fruit, a tendril and a new stem grow from each knot. When trimming, we remove the new stem – also known as the growth point, shoot or side runner. The flower and leaf can also be trimmed, but only in certain situations.

Pruning is very important, but not the only need to grow cucumbers. You can find more information on planting and harvesting cucumbers in our articles on vertical cultivation of cucumbers and care of cucumber plants. At the moment, however, we will deal with all the details of pruning cucumber vines.

A useful tool for pruning cucumbers:

Is pruning cucumbers necessary?

Pruning cucumbers is not a difficult task! Source: Lindakowen

Whether you pick up the clipper or not depends on the type of your cucumber plant. Bush varieties don't grow much sideways, so they require little or no pruning. The only time they need a cut is when they become too friendly with the neighboring plants. Pruning is also not so important for cucumber vines that spread on the ground without vertical support.

Climbing cucumbers are the real goals here. Since they rely on vertical support, they must be kept in a line. Pruning is necessary so that the vines grow in the right direction.

You will also find that cutting the plant properly will help produce more, higher quality fruit. When you cut a vine, the energy that went into its growth is redirected to another location. So if your cucumber vine spends all of its energy growing many stems and leaves, it won't focus on fruit. By reducing the attention-intensive branches, you give the plant the opportunity to get involved with these cukes.

When should cucumbers be pruned?

Prune your cucumber plants throughout the growing season. Pay attention to new growth points and remove them as long as they are less than 5 cm long. Also keep an eye out for damage and illnesses that should be remedied immediately.

Young cucumber plants can outdo themselves and bloom as long as they are small. By cutting off the lower flowers, the energy is redirected to the growth of stems and leaves, which will result in more fruits in the future. You will also cut stubborn branches when training young vines.

How to prune a cucumber plant

Cucumber plantOn this cucumber plant you can clearly see the tendril and the flower between the leaves. Source: Treetop Mom

Clean your secateurs before starting. Otherwise, they could easily spread plant diseases not only to your cucumbers but also to other plants. If possible, use bypass scissors instead of stem anvils.

As mentioned earlier, cucumbers grow from a stem. This is the lifeline of the plant and does not grow back when cut. So we only prune the shoots that come from this main stem. Usually you stick to pruning the base of the plant. This keeps it on a vine, but allows the tip to fill its grid.

Find the lowest 5-7 knots on the base and pinch off the shoots. If they are already longer than a few centimeters, trim them with a hair clipper so as not to damage the main vine. Make a clean cut as close as possible to the main vine. If the shoots are so big that they are already hanging on the grille, leave them alone and focus on newer stems instead. Remove all flowers so the plant blooms on top.

Next, find and remove any leaves, vines, or fruits that are badly damaged or show signs of disease. Prune vines that don't grow in the right direction. If the leaves become very bushy in one place, thin them so that there is good air circulation. If you want to divert energy, prune the excess fruit or leaves.

When you are finished, wash all the tools you use and remove any fallen residue from the floor. When watering, avoid getting the cucumber vines wet so that no bacteria infect the cuts. Return to your cucumber vines a few times every summer to spice them up as needed.

frequently asked Questions

Q: Can you cut cucumber tendrils?

A: If they are not in the way, leave the tendrils alone. The main vine needs them to hold on to the support.

Q: Should I cut off cucumber flowers?

A: Pinch off the flowers if you want more stem and leaf growth – especially if the plant is young. You can remove flowers on the bottom so that the plant focuses more on the top cucumbers (this also keeps cucumbers away from the ground).

The green thumbs behind this article:
Rachel Garcia
Juicy fanatic
Lorin Nielsen
Lifetime gardener

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