When digging, we add compost (4–5 kg per 1 sq. M), carefully embed it in the soil so that the sprout fly and cucumber mosquito cannot lay off the larvae, which are very difficult to get rid of later.
In some years, we do without compost, sow mustard, mow it before flowering in the fall and close it up when digging into the top layer of the garden bed.
At the beginning of May, we loosen the soil with a trident with the simultaneous introduction of complex fertilizers (1 tbsp. Spoon per 1 sq. M). We stretch the old film on the garden bed so that the soil warms up at a depth of 8–10 cm to 12–13˚. Then we remove it, with a hoe we make holes with a depth of 7-10 cm in 2 rows every 60 cm, placing them in a checkerboard pattern.
We level the bottom of the well, spill it with boiling water or a weak solution (pink) of potassium permanganate. Place 4–5 cucumber seeds in each hole, sprinkling with 1 cm of damp earth. Then cover the bed tightly with a clean, thin non-woven cloth and film on top, carefully securing the edges with iron staples. This allows us to sow the cucumber 2-3 weeks earlier than usual.
The beginning of the growing season this year was successful, the seedlings appeared friendly, the seedlings grew and developed well.
Soil mulched in this way does not compact, retains moisture, warms up well and simplifies maintenance. As the plants grew, they completely covered the garden with leaves. Watering and feeding was carried out only in the holes. We cover the bed with a transparent film instead of black, under which even weeds do not germinate. Of course, sprouting weeds have to be removed 1-2 times.
When growing a cucumber in the garden, you need to be careful to help plants in extreme conditions. This year, we had to supplement our technology with three more new techniques:
- after the cold, a strong heat began, the soil in the holes dried out, we covered them with dry grass, which significantly reduced water consumption during irrigation;
- sharp daily changes in air temperature in July after prolonged June cold weather slowed down the development of plants.
Downy mildew has appeared.
Spraying plants with a solution of "Immunocytofit" (1 tablet per 1.5 liters of water) helped to increase natural immunity. After some time, thrips appeared on individual plants, several leaves had to be removed and the treatment repeated at the same concentration;
- then the warmth was established, the plants began to grow rapidly, bloomed profusely. At the same time, many lateral shoots with thick succulent leaves appeared, which obscured each other to the detriment of fruiting. Even the lower leaves began to turn yellow, and fruiting was delayed. They were urgently lifted onto trellises in the form of tents. For this, three vinyl tubes were installed, the ends of which were buried in the holes, and the upper ones were tied with twine.
Plants should be lifted on supports before watering so as not to break fragile stems.
The main stem of each plant was fixed on a vertical trellis with twine, and the side shoots were pinched on 2-3 leaves. The plants are now better illuminated by the sun. A more favorable microclimate and optimal humidity were created in the tents. The bees got free access to flowers.
From that moment on, we made sure that the shoots did not cling to other twine threads, creating thickets. At times they were returned to their places and twisted clockwise.
Care was greatly simplified, the passages in the borders were freed up, where the whips went down, the stems and leaves did not break, and it took less time to find the fruits. Literally a week later, the result was evident. The cucumbers were collected in buckets. Summer residents in the neighboring gardens lost heart, the plants turned yellow, the cucumber vegetation ended early, and we continued picking in September.
After the first wave of fruiting, the leaves became rough, prickly, the roots of the second and third order aged and died off. For rejuvenation and the formation of adventitious roots, humus was poured into the holes, the plants were sprayed with a solution of urea (1.5 g per 1 liter of water). The leaves acquired an intense green color, became softer to the touch, and the ability to bear fruit continued until the autumn frosts.