Cucumbers are one of the most popular vegetable gardeners in Russia and loved by gardeners. To argue with this is difficult, and does not make much sense. Given the size of the Russian state, the cultivation of cucumbers occurs in a variety of climatic conditions. But, despite the fact that the plant is thermophilic, in fairly large areas of the country it is quite possible to grow cucumbers in open ground. The Leningrad Region is no exception to this rule. But before proceeding to the description of the conditions of the region, it is necessary to once again recall the features of cucumbers and their cultivation.
Cucumbers. Description and features
Cucumbers are an annual herb with a creeping or branching stem. Its length can be 2 meters. Cucumber varieties are widespread, for which the bush form is characteristic. The root system of cucumbers refers to the type of surface and extends no deeper than 1 meter, and most of it is 20-25 cm from the surface of the soil.
Cucumbers have a number of distinct properties, the main ones are:
- thermophilic. This property explains that the best yield is achieved when growing cucumbers in greenhouses. From which it is not at all necessary to conclude that the open ground does not suit such a plant as cucumbers. Currently, varieties and hybrids of the plant have been developed, which, with proper and proper care, are fully capable of providing sufficient yield when grown in open ground in almost any region of central Russia. But for this it is necessary to strictly follow the recommendations and requirements for care;
- need to feed. In whatever conditions the cultivation is carried out - in the open field or under various film coatings of greenhouses and greenhouses, cucumbers are always very dependent on correctly produced and regular feeding;
- moisture loving. Everyone knows about this property of cucumbers. Regular and frequent watering is one of the necessary conditions for the successful cultivation of cucumbers. Of course, in no case should excessive moisture be allowed, but it is much less common than the lack of moisture for cucumbers;
- short photoperiod of the plant. For normal and successful development and growth, cucumbers need only 10-12 hours of daylight, naturally, if other conditions for their cultivation are fulfilled.
Features of the conditions of the Leningrad region
Before talking about the cultivation of cucumbers in the open field in the conditions of the Leningrad region, it is necessary to take into account that this is a fairly large region, and the conditions of gardening in the north and in the south are very different. Based on this, it can be unambiguously stated that the cultivation of cucumbers in open ground in the north-east of the region is unproductive. At the same time, this type of vegetable growing is quite accessible in fairly large areas of the Leningrad Region, namely in its southern and central part.
It should also be borne in mind that the yield of 5-8 kg can be considered a good result when growing cucumbers in the open field in the Leningrad region. fruits per 1 sq.m.
Another feature of regional conditions is the strong temperature and climatic differences between the years. So, in the Leningrad region at least 1 year out of 5 consistently brings a long spring and cold summer, which has an extremely negative effect on the level of yield of cucumbers.
Do not forget, given the above, that the region of the Leningrad region is considered to be the area of risk farming.
Ways to increase yield
There are several different ways, with varying degrees of success applied in practice, which allow to minimize the risks of crop failure when growing cucumbers.
- Simultaneous planting 3-4 different varieties or hybrids of cucumbers, which are designed for open ground. In no case should one think that if one variety gave a good harvest in a certain year, this situation will be repeated further. For planting, it is necessary to choose cold-resistant varieties, zoned for the Leningrad region. The following key characteristics of cucumber varieties are disease resistance and relative early ripening (the best option is up to 45 days). Under the conditions of the Leningrad Region, it is not possible to wait for ripening of late varieties.
- The use of self-pollinated and parthenocarpic cucumber varieties. Usually their use is recommended for greenhouses and greenhouses, but also in the conditions of the northern regions, it also acquires meaning. The reason is the small number of sunny days when insects are most active. On rainy and overcast days, the rhythm of their vital activity decreases, leading to problems with pollination. However, to completely exclude cucumbers pollinated by insects, it is not necessary, since they are somewhat more useful and have their undoubted advantages.
- Covering cucumbers. In cloudy and cold weather, and there are quite a few of such summer days in the Leningrad Region, it is recommended to additionally protect plants with a conventional film or some covering nonwoven material. This will require the manufacture and installation of support structures in the form of an arc. They can also be useful when tying, which cucumbers also need.
An example of competent planting of cucumbers is shown in the video:
The main recommendations listed above should be followed.
The best varieties for open ground of the Leningrad region
The hybrid belongs to parthenocarpic species, is early maturing. The first cucumbers ripen in 45 days. The main feature of the variety is that most of the fruit is formed on the main scourge. This provides an opportunity to harvest only on weekends, which is an important advantage for some gardeners. Cucumbers have the shape of a cylinder, not long, weighing up to 90 g. The hybrid has excellent taste, and its fruits are suitable for both salads, and for canning and salting.
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Growing cucumbers in the open field of the Leningrad Region is not a simple and easily accomplished task. However, with its competent decision, the result will bring true pleasure to cucumber lovers - one of the most popular vegetable crops.