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Today, the owners of summer cottages and household plots are increasingly using unconventional methods of growing vegetables and berry crops: under straw, in trenches, in ridges, on combined beds ... the work of the gardener.
Cucumbers - general information
Cucumber flowers: a - female b - male
Useful properties of cucumbers
A cucumber can be called a vegetable for pleasure - it is difficult for them to eat their fill, but it is always pleasant to eat - both fresh in the heat, and crispy lightly salted, and well salted in winter (especially with hot potatoes), and pickled. Cucumbers, even in small quantities, give any salad a special refreshing taste, and salted or pickled ones are good not only as an appetizer, but also as a component of the first and second courses - pickles, stews and many others. Already because of this, it is worth tinkering with cucumbers. But the fact that they are not high in calories does not mean that they are not healthy. For those who do not want to gain excess weight or want to get rid of it, cucumbers are a real gift. And not only because of the small amount of calories - among their medicinal properties there is also a direct ability to get rid of obesity. Cucumbers also have many other healing properties, primarily because they contain many unique mineral salts and useful trace elements such as phosphorus, magnesium, manganese, iron and iodine.
Cucumbers are very useful for "heart", in addition, they improve intestinal function, prevent constipation, promote the elimination of cholesterol, reduce the acidity of gastric juice (whereas most other vegetables, on the contrary, increase it) and even prevent baldness... And probably every woman knows about their cosmetic properties - masks made from cucumber pulp work very well on the skin, they also help fight juvenile acne.
This vegetable is one of the most ancient. Cucumbers have been cultivated for at least 6,000 years - this is known because their images were found in ancient Egyptian splits, and even now it is difficult to find a vegetable garden that did not have at least a few cucumber bushes.
India is considered the birthplace of cucumbers, because it is the only country where they grow wild. This is confirmed by the many habits of cucumbers, which like a climate similar to a tropical - warm and humid. Seeds of cucumbers germinate at a temperature not lower than + 12 ° C, and the plants themselves feel best at a soil temperature of +20. 25 ° C and air - about + 30 ° C. In cold soil (and it is cold for seeds already at + 10 ° C) they cannot grow for a long time - their roots quickly die off, and then the plant itself dies. Spring and autumn frosts are fatal for cucumbers. Therefore, in most ordinary vegetable gardens it is too dry for them, and in spring it is also cold, so you have to grow cucumbers mainly from seedlings. They are not completely soil-based in every area, and they are sown directly on the beds later than most other vegetables, when the weather is already warm. At the same time, it is possible to get fruits only due to the fact that they ripen quickly - on average in about 2 months.
Cucumber also needs heat in another period of its life - during flowering, because if the temperature is below + 15 ° C, the fruits simply will not tie.
As a plant, cucumber is a real annual, a liana from the pumpkin family, with creeping branched stems (they like to climb on supports and often have to be formed, especially in greenhouses), large leaves and rather large yellow flowers. Some varieties have flowers so beautiful that you just want to move them from the garden to the flower garden. Many do this, growing cucumbers at home or on the balcony, not so much for fruit as as ornamental plants.
The root system of a cucumber is very branched, and most of the roots are at a depth of 20-40 cm. The roots themselves are very delicate, they do not tolerate not only cold and watering with cold water, but also any damage, including those that occur during transplantation.
The flowers of a cucumber are dioecious, that is, they are separately male (they are called barren flowers) and female (Fig.). Female flowers are easily recognizable by the fact that they immediately see an ovary, similar to a tiny cucumber, but barren flowers do not, their task is to produce pollen. They also differ in that in most varieties, female flowers are located in 1-2 leaf axils, and male flowers in inflorescences of 5-7 flowers. However, in many modern varieties and hybrids, female flowers are also collected in bunches, and there are more of them in quantity. Such varieties are called varieties (hybrids) with a predominantly female type of flowering, while in ordinary ones, the type of flowering is called mixed.
Features of growing cucumbers
The ovary can develop into a cucumber only after pollination, which creates unnecessary difficulties for gardeners when growing cucumbers in greenhouses. In the open air, pollen is carried by bees, and in greenhouses, cucumbers have to be pollinated by themselves. It's good at least that male and female flowers appear on the same plant and special pollinating varieties are rarely needed for cucumbers and not for everyone.
True, there are also special varieties bred for greenhouses that do not require pollination, because greens are tied without it. Such varieties are called parthenocarpic.
Unfortunately, one more small difficulty is associated with pollination of cucumbers - due to the fact that it is cross-cutting, it is rarely possible to get your own pure-bred seeds from cucumbers in the open field. Those who want to achieve this have to figure out how to isolate the desired variety of cucumbers from others growing not only in the same garden, but also in neighboring ones.
Unripe fruits (greens) are used as food for cucumbers - they are fully ripe, they remain edible, but become less tasty, their peel coarsens, and hard seeds will only interfere. To such a state, the greens can be allowed to outgrow only if you are going to get your seeds.
Soil preparation and fertilization
The best earthen mixture for adult cucumbers (the one that needs seedlings has already been mentioned above) is prepared from equal parts of sod land, peat and humus or manure, but it is imperative to check its acidity, and if the pH goes beyond 6.5 -7, add limescale (quicklime or chalk). It is more important to achieve this in greenhouses than in the ground, and not so much for the sake of the cucumbers themselves, but because pathogens of various diseases are more fond of acidic soil. Greenhouse conditions are good not only for many vegetables, fungi also like them no less, so the plants there get sick more often and every opportunity should be used to reduce the risk of infection. For the same reason, it is never superfluous to add wood ash to the soil in greenhouses. But other fertilizers immediately after the preparation of the earthen mixture, if it was made in the fall, do not need to be applied yet. But at the same time it is worth checking the serviceability and condition of the lighting equipment once again, and if necessary, clean the glass and check the joints between them for tightness. In general, the cleanliness of the glasses must be monitored constantly, because dirty glasses are worse for sunlight. At the same time, if the trellises are not included in the design of the greenhouse, they must be installed as well.
It is necessary to fertilize greenhouse soil a few days (about a week) before planting seedlings there, adding additional organic fertilizers - manure, its concentrate "Humisol" or compost in the amount of 2-3 buckets per 1 m 2. From mineral fertilizers for the same area, you need to take 30 g of urea, 80 g of simple superphosphate (or 40 g of double) and 30 g of potassium sulfate or other potassium salt. Fertilizers must first be scattered over the surface of the earth, and then dig it up, embedding them to the depth of the fertile layer.
Planting and care in the open field
Planting a stone rose (rejuvenated) in open ground is carried out in May - end of September. Planting an outlet before the very cold weather - doom the plant to death. Before the cold weather, the rosettes must take root in order to survive the frost.
When planting outdoors, choose an open, sunny, dry area with sandy or rocky non-acidic soil. The plant will calmly endure the throws of the weather “from fire to fire”, from heat to cold, from damp to dryness.
1. Temperature, lighting and humidity
Juveniles tolerate heat well, like open, sunny places. In winter, they can withstand temperatures up to 30 degrees below zero. (For wintering features, see below.)
It grows in shaded places, but in the shade it stretches, becomes thinner, and loses its brightness.
Does not tolerate marshy wet soils.
During heavy rains or thoughtless watering, water remains in the leaves of the outlet and, if there is insufficient ventilation, can lead to the death of the plant, especially if the flower grows in a shaded area.
In practice, watering the plant is enough only after planting, then watering only in dry times.
2. Soil for a stone rose
The soil for "stone flowers" is selected light, with sand or pebbles. The soil for the plant needs a thin layer of 5-10 cm. If the planting material will be planted in an area with fertile chernozem soil, then around and under the rosettes, mix the soil with fine pebbles, gravel or sand.
Young people in the open field do not need fertilizer. Fertilizer pushes for growth and elongation of rosettes, while the leaves lose color and lose frost resistance.
If your rejuvenators grow on a flower bed in the vicinity of other plants, then the fertilizers that you apply under them will be enough for rejuvenating. And if the juveniles grow in splendid isolation, then the natural depletion of the soil will occur in 4 years, in this case, half fertilization is allowed.
3. Transplant and pruning
If you decide to change the place, then transfer the sockets with a clod of earth on which the flower sits. The depth of the roots is about 10cm.
Pruning is not necessary, just remove the parts of the plant that have lost their decorative effect. Keep an eye on the bottom leaves of the rosettes and remove unpresentable ones.
4. How a stone rose winters (rejuvenated)
Wintering causes difficulties only for the spiderweb species of the plant, the rest will calmly endure frosts down to -30 degrees.
The trouble with wintering is that moisture can get on the sockets and, during the freezing and thaw periods, cause rotting and death of the flower. Salvation is in removing obsolete parts of the plant, removing all weeds around the plant and covering with spruce branches. This means that spruce branches will allow air circulation and protect against direct moisture.
Planting and caring for cucumbers
According to Vasmer's etymological dictionary, the name is borrowed from Wed-Greek. ἄγουρος (cucumber), which goes back to ἄωρος (unripe). This vegetable, eaten unripe, is deliberately opposed to the melon - πέπων, which is eaten when ripe .
The name of this plant in Sanskrit is consonant with the name of the legendary Indian prince Buta (the word “buta” in Sanskrit means “fire”), who had sixty thousand children, and is associated with the many seeds of the fruit.
The stalk is creeping, rough, ends with antennae, with which it can catch on to the support, while stretching 1-2 m.
Leaves are cordate, five-lobed.
The fruit is multi-seeded, juicy, emerald green, pimpled. The structure of the fruit is characteristic of the pumpkin family and is defined in botanical literature as pumpkin. It can have various shapes and sizes (depending on the variety). In culinary terms, cucumbers are traditionally referred to as vegetable crops.
The genome of the cucumber seed has 350 million DNA base pairs. Five of the seven chromosomes of cucumbers arose from ten chromosomes of common ancestors with melon .
The cucumber appeared in culture more than 6 thousand years ago. The homeland of this species is the tropical and subtropical regions of India, the foothills of the Himalayas, where it still grows in natural conditions. Mentioned in the Bible as the vegetable of Egypt (Num. 11: 5).
This culture was already known to the Greeks, from whom it passed to the Romans, and in the era of Charlemagne it was already spread throughout Central Europe.
The first mention of cucumbers in the Moscow state was made by the German ambassador S. Herberstein in 1528 in his notes on a trip to Muscovy.
Nowadays, the cucumber culture is widespread and has many varieties and varieties. The fruits of wild cucumbers are small, and some are inedible due to the content of bitter substances - cucurbitacins.
Its fruits contain 95-97% water and a negligible amount of proteins, fats and carbohydrates. The remaining 3% includes carotene, vitamins PP, C and B, as well as macro- and microelements, as well as a lot of potassium and magnesium.
Cucumbers are rich in complex organic substances that play an important role in metabolism. These substances stimulate appetite, promote the absorption of other foods and improve digestion. Fresh cucumber increases the acidity of gastric juice, so it is contraindicated for those suffering from gastritis, peptic ulcer disease, as well as people with high acidity of the stomach.
Potassium in cucumbers improves heart and kidney function. In addition, cucumbers, like other vegetables, are high in fiber. Fiber is not absorbed by the human body, but it regulates the intestines and removes excess cholesterol from the body, the excess of which contributes to the development of atherosclerosis, liver, kidney and other organs diseases.
Cucumbers are grown in almost every vegetable garden. Usually, cucumbers are sown on a plot of the garden that was under cabbage, that is, in the second year after fertilization, since the cucumber loves nutritious soil, but not too fatty. Fresh manure or gold gives the cucumber a bitter taste and causes mottling, therefore, if it is necessary to fertilize the soil, the manure is usually placed in the fall. The area designated for cucumbers is plowed or dug with a bayonet, after which ridges up to an arshin wide are made, quite high in low places. Sowing time is not earlier than May, since the cucumber is very afraid of frost. Ridge sowing is done with dry or germinated seed or, finally, with seedlings, the latter method makes it possible to get early cucumbers. In our steppes, on melons, they usually sow with dry seeds, while in the north, in more humid areas, it is more convenient to sow germinated seeds. When breeding seedlings, the seeds are sown in bowls or in special pots and, having allowed them to develop to the 3rd leaf, are transplanted into the ground on a warm day, with a distance of 3 to 4 vershok from each other. When a 3 leaf begins to appear on the ridge cucumbers, then it is advised to pinch (only not Murom cucumbers). The consequence of such an operation is two or four lateral shoots, which subsequently give the basis for fruitful branches. Flowers and ovaries that appear from time to time at the base of these lashes must be plucked. From time to time, it is useful to loosen the soil near the roots of the plant and cover the ground with fine manure or straw chaff. Such a cover protects the soil from drying out and at the same time serves as a convenient bed for fruits, protecting them from contact with damp soil, on which cucumbers get dirty, sometimes rot or become stained. Watering at the beginning of planting is quite frequent, after throwing out the 3rd leaf, it is done no more than 2-3 times a week, and always in the evenings.
A greenhouse or greenhouse cucumber is very gentle, juicy, it has more pulp, fewer seeds, it is more suitable for salads and generally for fresh consumption, but it is not strong in lying (not all varieties) due to excessive wateriness, it is not harvested for future use. With a greenhouse culture, a cucumber needs a temperature of 18 to 20 ° C. The land is taken from sod, with early distillation it is lighter than in summer.Seeds are usually sown already germinated in damp sand, sawdust, etc. When the plant takes root and throws out 3 - 4 leaves, systematic pinching of the terminal buds begins to lay 4 - 8 main fruit-bearing branches or whips, which could be evenly distributed over the surface of the earth in the greenhouse. After pinching, watered 2 - 3 times a week. During the flowering period, if the weather is warm, the greenhouses are opened in order to achieve pollination by the movement of the air carrying pollen, otherwise it is artificially produced. To do this, colored dust is transferred to the stigma with a drawing brush or male flowers are collected and, having torn off their petals, they put anthers on the stigmas, where they remain until pollination occurs. The greenhouse crop produces early cucumbers, which are sold to capitals and big cities at a high price: growing them in large quantities can give very good income, but only in very large settlements.
Usually, cucumbers are harvested in a semi-ripe state, but to obtain seeds, they are left on the ridges until they are fully ripe, until their whips wither and dry up, and the very fruits from the green ones turn orange-yellow. Ripe seed specimens are laid out in the sun or in a warm place, where they are softened. Then they are cut, the seeds are squeezed into a bowl and the latter are washed in several waters. It is best to dry it first in the sun, and then on a Russian stove, after which, after pouring it into bags, store it in a cool dry place. The ability to germinate is preserved in cucumber seeds for up to 10 years, but 3-5 years old are considered the best.
Cucumber hybrids are widespread - they have a high yield. Among the hybrids, parthenocarpic (which are able to form fruits without pollination) and bee-pollinated are distinguished.
Pasadena - plant cultivar Cucumber
Information on the admission of Pasadena cucumber from the Register of the State Sort Commission of the Russian Federation
Application for admission No. 29679, registered 1996-04-04. The Pasadena cucumber variety was included in the list of approved in 1998. Approved for use in the regions: Central, Middle Volga.
The originator of the Pasadena Cucumber variety is:
SYNGENTA SEEDS B.V. (WESTEINDE 62, P.O. BOX 2, 1600 AA ENKHUIZEN THE NETHERLANDS)
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