What is your experience with growing cucumbers in pots

Trendy vegetables for the snack garden Grow mini and snack cucumbers on the balcony

Bucket and location for growing cucumbers on the balcony

A large pot, space for tendrils and careful care: it doesn't take much more to grow cucumbers on the balcony. The bucket should have a volume of 20 to 40 liters so that the snack vegetables thrive in it. Holes in the bottom of the pot allow the excess water to drain off. Humus-rich, loose potting soil with organic slow-release fertilizer - horn semolina or ripe compost - ensures healthy growth. Cucumbers also like it warm and sunny: If the balcony is mostly in the shade, fewer flowers and therefore fewer fruits will form. A sheltered place is important so that the plants can grow in peace. Cucumbers need a climbing aid in the pot. The long shoots can be attached to cords, wires, a trellis or scaffolding made of bamboo or wood.

Planting and harvest time for cucumbers

For cultivation on balconies and terraces, varieties that produce smaller fruits and remain more compact overall are ideal. Young plants can still be bought and planted in June. However, if you want to grow plants from seeds, you should start doing so in April or May. Caution, cucumbers do not tolerate the cold: the plants suffer at temperatures below 10 degrees. Before they go outside, the ice saints should be over - or the plants should be brought into the warm before frosty nights. From sowing to the first harvest it takes about ten weeks, as the master gardener and seed expert Hanna Strotmeier says. The first, small fruits are best removed to encourage the remaining cucumbers to ripen. If beautiful fruits then form, it is best to always pick the same. This stimulates the plant to supply new cucumbers again. When harvesting, the following applies: cut the fruit and do not break or tear to protect the plant.

Please do not forget to water and fertilize!

Cucumbers are a thirsty vegetable. But it shouldn't be too moist in the pot either. Plants particularly appreciate evenly moist soil and watering with lukewarm water. The organic long-term fertilizer in the pot supplies the cucumbers for many weeks. However, if the roots come out of the bottom of the pot from midsummer, it is time to replenish them: Hanna Strotmeier then recommends adding a suitable liquid fertilizer for vegetables to the irrigation water twice a week.

Store and use the harvested cucumbers

In the vegetable compartment of the refrigerator or in the cool cellar, cucumbers keep for up to ten days. But they shouldn't be right next to apples and tomatoes, advises Hanna Strotmeier. Apples in particular give off a ripening gas that causes other types of fruit and vegetables to spoil more quickly. The small snack cucumbers, however, taste best fresh. They are also suitable for salads.

Mini snack cucumber 'Salamanda' F1: about ten centimeters long fruits, purely female variety (no pollination necessary), resistant to downy mildew and powdery mildew as well as cucumber mosaic virus, cultivation outdoors and in the greenhouse possible

Mini snake cucumber 'Printo' F1: fruits 15 to 17 centimeters long, resistant to powdery mildew and cucumber mosaic virus, can be grown outdoors and in the greenhouse