Cucumbers are the perfect vegetable to grow and harvest during summer. If you want to know how to grow cucumbers in polytunnel, this article talks about planting cucumbers in polytunnels.
As with other fruits and vegetables, growing your cucumbers tastes better, sweeter, and fresher. It’s also more fulfilling. With a mini polytunnel, you’ll be able to plant different types of cucumbers.
How Can You Grow Cucumbers in a Polytunnel?
Planting cucumbers in a polytunnel is a lot easier than you think. Here’s how:
Fill a small pot with organic compost, sow two cucumber seeds in every pot, and water it. Cucumbers thrive best in warmer climates, so the seeds need heat to germinate faster. If all goes well, the seeds should start germinating in 7 to 10 days.
As mentioned, cucumbers love heat and humidity. If you live in colder UK regions or you want to grow cucumber all year round, it’s best to grow them inside a polytunnel.
Plant the seedlings out if you see two to three leaves. Water them regularly and make sure the soil is moist and free of weeds. If you’re growing them in a polytunnel, you can further increase heat by wrapping bubble wrap around the polytunnel and misting your cucumber plants with water.
As your plants grow, add support for their trailing stems using bamboo canes or netting. Water them regularly and feed them when they start flowering.
What Can You Plant Next to Cucumbers?
Not only are cucumbers easy to plant, but they’re also ready to harvest within 50 to 70 days. The speed of growth is why they are a top choice for many UK gardeners. However, it’s essential to keep them free from diseases. Otherwise, they will suffer from powdery mildew, bacterial wilt, mosaic virus, or an attack from harmful pests.
Companion planting can help avoid these challenges. Some of the plants you can place near your cucumbers include cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, corn, peas, lettuce, legume beans, radishes, sunflowers, onions, marigolds, and oregano.
These plants can help deter pesky bugs like ants, aphids, beetles, and more. Companion plants can help keep the soil healthy, encourage growth, and produce tastier produce.
While there are great companion plants for cucumbers, there are some that you shouldn’t plant near your cukes. Melons, potatoes, and sage are not compatible with cucumbers.
Potatoes compete with your cucumbers for nutrients and water, and sage attracts pests that may harm your plants. On the other hand, ground vining plants will also compete with your cucumbers.
Is Buying a Mini Polytunnel a Good Idea?
A mini polytunnel is a must-have item for gardeners in the United Kingdom, especially those new to polytunnel gardening. Here are a few reasons why buying a mini polytunnel is a great idea:
Different sizes to choose from
Did you know that one of the most common misconceptions about polytunnels is that they’re large and spacious? While some are as big as a small house, most types come in all shapes and sizes. Mini polytunnels are the most convenient, thanks to their small size. Unless you’re using your polytunnel commercially, you’re better off with a mini version.
Keep your plants safe from animals and pests
Animals and pests like caterpillars, aphids, beetles, rodents, raccoons, and other animals like to munch on your leaves and produce. Keeping them safe inside a polytunnel is prevents insects and animals from affecting your plants. Additionally, it will also protect them from diseases that can transfer from neighbouring plants.
Protect plants from harsh weather conditions
Heavy rain, strong winds, and the excessive heat can damage plants, especially more tender ones. A mini polytunnel can effectively shield your plants from harsh weather conditions. You’ll be able to grow healthy plants regardless of the weather outside.
Best for UK gardeners with limited space
Want to grow your product but don’t have enough space? A mini polytunnel is an excellent solution for gardeners in the UK with limited space. The standard size for mini-polytunnels are usually six ft., but there are more compact solutions for those who prefer smaller ones. Even though mini-polytunnels are smaller, they work just like regular-sized polytunnels.
Great for beginners
If you want to know more about polytunnel gardening but you’re not ready to invest in a large polytunnel, mini-polytunnels are the ideal solution. Before you buy a more permanent one, you can learn how a polytunnel works and know more about the perfect growing conditions of your plants.
Extend growing season
With a mini polytunnel, you can start planting even before the cold season begins. You can grow plants any time you want. Once the weather gets warmer, you can transplant the plants in your polytunnel into your UK garden. In this way, you’ll be able to plant more and harvest earlier than usual.
The Bottom Line on How to Grow Cucumbers in Polytunnel
Knowing how to grow cucumbers in polytunnel lets you plant them any time of the year—placing your plants inside a mini polytunnel protects them from pests, inclement weather, and more. You’ll be able to enjoy cold and crispy cucumbers perfect for salads and cold drinks.