I just couldn’t pass up the opportunity to try to grow cucumbers by seed this year during my gardening from seed quest of 2020. So far, I have seed started impatiens & gazania flowers indoors, as well as tomato seeds 3 different ways with varying results. I also planted peas & marigold seeds outside. I saved the best for the last & was able to finally plant cucumber seeds once the weather decided to cooperate. A veggie garden just isn’t complete without cucumbers, in my humble opinion. Cucumbers are one of my favorite veggies to grow & we end up eating about 5-7 cucumbers per week during the growing season. So, of course I had to give growing cucumbers from seed a go.
My first step was creating my raised bed plan for the year & placing my tomato cages. I always plant cucumbers next to my tomato cages in order to allow them to climb up the sides. I find that they sprawl too much to be contained in their own cage, but flourish when I train on them on the sides of multiple cages. This allows me to grow my tomatoes inside the cages & cucumbers on the outside which is a huge space saver for me. I only have one raised bed veggie garden, so the more space I can save the better. The plants have thrived for me this way & neither the tomatoes or cucumbers seem to mind their neighbors.
Next, I followed the directions on my seed packet & dug a trench in my raised bed 1 inch deep behind 2 tomato cages. I find the trench method to be the easiest method when spacing out my seeds & making sure that they are all at the correct depth. I planted 6 seeds about 3 inches apart & then covered them with 1 inch of soil. I made sure to hill the soil over the plants as the seed packet suggested. I repeated the process & made another trench on the opposite end of my raised bed, also near 2 tomato cages. This time I did not hill up the soil on top of the seeds to see how much of a difference that will make because I love a good experiment. I watered in the seeds & the job was done. It only took me about 10 minutes. I heart a quick gardening task.
Once the seedlings come up (fingers crossed) I will thin them out to only 4 seedlings per trench. I decided not to waste my veggie seedlings this year & I will be replanting any thinned out seedlings in my flowerbeds. I have already re-homed 6 snowbird pea seedlings in my Blanche garden (I’m a huge Golden Girls fan, so I have named different sections of my garden after the girls). I also plan on re-homing any extra cucumber & tomato seedlings in my Rose (Nylund) garden. I want to get as much production out of my veggies as I can this year which is why I just can’t part with the seedlings. We’ll see how this goes. I haven’t planted veggies outside of my raised bed yet, so the results should be interesting.
The funny thing about seed starting is how you try to make everything perfect the first few times that you give it a go, but like with most things, once you have a little experience under your belt you just end up diving right on in. Seed starting is really rather easy, although as I have learned, you just shouldn’t count your eggs before they hatch or more like you shouldn’t count your plants before they germinate. I’ll be thrilled if I end up with just 4 cucumber plants, considering I have only grown 1-2 per year prior. But if I only end up with 1 thriving cucumber plant then I’ll be happy with that too. Beggars can’t be choosers.
Like always, I’ll make sure to keep you updated on their progress. I’m hoping it goes well. If it does, then I plan on collecting their seeds & regrowing them next year. I follow a few people on Twitter & Instagram that grow their own veggies from their own seeds exclusively. How awesome would that be? & think of all the money you could save! I aspire to be them one day. Happy planting, everyone!
Like this article? Check out how I planted peas for fall harvests.