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Video: Growing Parthenocarpic Dutch Cucumber Hybrids
We plant parthenocarpic Dutch cucumber hybrids in the spring greenhouse. Parthenocarpic, or in Russian speaking "self-fertile" plants, form ovaries without fertilization at all, in contrast to self-pollinated (idiogamous) plants. Possessing a lot of advantages, they are not suitable for obtaining seed, since their seeds are not viable
It is worth making a few general remarks about the life of the cucumber plant in our hobby greenhouses. With a decrease in air temperature (19 … 22 ° C), with high humidity (85-90%) and soil (80-85%), especially in the zone of the root collar of a cucumber plant, the pressure in the cells increases, they partially rupture.
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In connection with this biological feature, it is very important, if possible, to prevent a decrease in soil temperature. Keep in mind that in film greenhouses, at low night temperatures and good insolation during the day, shoots grow quickly, and fruits are poured slowly. If the temperature in the root zone is high (25 … 28 ° C), then short-term drops in air temperature to 15 ° C are easier for plants.
In the daytime, overheating negatively affects the intensity of photosynthesis: the higher the temperature, the greater the daytime depression. In greenhouses, plants with high solar radiation can overheat due to weak air movement near the surface of the leaves. Therefore, on clear sunny days, there should be good ventilation in greenhouses, by the way, to increase the availability of CO2, since the hairs on the leaves of the cucumber prevent evaporation and reduce the intensity of air mixing at the border with the epidermis. The greatest accumulation of crops occurs in the months of the highest solstice. In the light, the surface of the leaves acquires a waxy coating, especially in intense light. Wax education is a kind of protection against diseases.
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The ratio of cucumber to mineral nutrition elements
The most important thing to note is that the total concentration of salts exceeding 1.8-2% negatively affects the development and growth of plants, causing them a stressful state. It is necessary to fertilize more often, but with weak concentrations of fertilizers with irrigation water. Filling the soil is the same as in the open field, but in closed ground when using mineral fertilizers, you need to remember that nitrogen must be applied in the nitrate form (NO3), this is potassium nitrate, and in the ammonium form (NH4 +) - no more than 20% of total nitrogen input in mineral form. In addition, there is evidence that NH4 + ions increase the susceptibility of plants to bacterial diseases. According to our data, a good fertilizer for cucumbers is potassium nitrate from Chile. Fertilizers are best applied in dissolved form with irrigation water.
The nutritional sufficiency can be corrected visually, by the appearance of the plant. The lack of nutrients is reflected in the color of the leaves. Its lightening to a pale green indicates a lack of nitrogen. On the contrary, with an excess of this element, the leaf turns dark green with a corrugated parenchyma surface between the veins. With a lack of potassium, a dark green color appears near the veins and a pale border along the periphery of the leaf. At the same time, young ovaries rot from the top. With a lack of phosphorus, and this is especially noticeable during the flowering period, the flowers are small, the corolla is pale and short, the leaves become grayish. Seedlings grown on such soil do not have generative organs. In parthenocarpic varieties, with a lack of calcium, an abnormal filling of fruits is noticed, and if there are a lot of them, then the growth stops.
Lack of magnesium - spots (2-2.5 mm), located in groups among parenchymal cells between leaf veins, speak about it - can reduce yield by 30%. Boron deficiency leads to fruit ugliness. Lack of copper, zinc and iron is manifested in the same way on young shoots and the tops of plants in the form of chlorosis and whitening of leaves and their rudiments. In our practice, a stable positive effect on bunch hybrids was from foliar feeding with Mg. Apparently, leaf feeding overcomes the competition from other ions in the root zone.
Even when the soil is well fertilized, during critical periods of plant development, such feeding is very effective, for example, at the very beginning of fruiting, spraying with a 0.1% solution of magnesium sulfate or nitrate increases the abundance of fruiting. Cucumber roots at low temperatures (below 12 ° C), poorly absorb nutrients. In this case, it is advisable to feed the plants by leaves with a weak solution of complex fertilizers with microelements of 0.1%.
We try to select the most disease-resistant hybrids for the greenhouse, since various pesticides used against plant diseases cause disturbances in the structure of the leaves. Obviously, in a small-volume greenhouse, it is difficult to find the right concentration. Spider mites (Tetrany-chus urticae) sometimes attack cucumbers. Ticks are passively spread by humans and animals, by air currents on the cobweb. Ticks prefer cucumber, eggplant, melons, and tomato. Mites multiply in dry and hot weather.
In autumn, when cultivated plants become inaccessible for nutrition, mites migrate to weeds. It is recommended to use Vertimek KE - 0.05% or Pegasus KS - 0.10-0.12% solutions against them, but it is better not to allow such guests into the garden and fight weeds. When plants are sprayed with insecticides, only 70-80% of pests die. The remaining individuals are capable of increasing their numbers thousands of times.
We plant cucumbers in the greenhouse with 22-25-day seedlings (3-4 leaves) in mid-April, if there are no "surprises" in nature. In case of a sudden cold snap, there is a small air heater, usually there is also enough additional shelter inside the greenhouse. If you run the risk of planting cucumbers earlier than the optimal time, you need to provide appropriate protection: cucumbers do not grow in the cold, no matter how you teach them and acclimatize them. Remember, in our forest-tundra, repeated cold weather occurs in May or before June 10.
For growing seedlings, it is better to use a peat-sawdil mixture in a 2: 1 ratio. The main thing is that there is no excess of fertilizers in it, since the main root, sprouting from the seed, is immediately damaged due to the high concentration of salts, and the lateral roots are kept mainly on the surface. Before sowing, the soil moisture in the pots should be 85%, and the temperature should be 25 ° C. In a pot, in a previously made depression (0.5-1 cm) or just on the surface, we plant one seed, then sprinkle (1 cm) with a substrate of the same composition as the pot mixture.
The sprouts are freely oriented in space and emerge from any position, but the most convenient one is horizontal, with the direction of the spout to the north. After sowing, it is recommended not to water the pots, but to cover them loosely with foil. Instead of pots, you can use special tablets Gumitar or Gumitab, if I'm not mistaken, of Finnish production. They are easy to use, contain macro- and microelements necessary for plants, biologically active substances.
After sowing, until the emergence of shoots, the temperature is maintained within 25 … 28 ° C, with the emergence of shoots, we lower it, during the day - up to 18 … 20 ° C, at night - up to 14 … 15 ° C; we carry out moderate watering. Top dressing with liquid fertilizers, including organic ones, on dry soil leads to root burns. If you decide to additionally feed the seedlings, you first need to moisten the soil with water, and then feed it, carry out timely ventilation.
A sharp drop in air and soil temperature at night can lead to lodging of seedlings and, conversely, overheating of the air at night - to stretching of seedlings and a decrease in their quality. Seedlings before planting in unheated film greenhouses should be well hardened, but within the parameters permissible for a cucumber. Caring for it - moderate watering, but not with cold water, from it cucumbers can get sick with root rot; if necessary, watering with the addition of fertilizers in small doses (no more than 0.3% salts in solution).
Dutch parthenocarpic hybrids in amateur greenhouses for three months of growing season do not require special formation at the recommended planting density for the variety. If we remove some of the lateral shoots, it is only for "cosmetic" reasons, so that there is no thickening.
Usually, the authors of a particular variety, in order to obtain the maximum yield, give a method for the formation of a specific variety. There are so-called single-stem hydrides. Generative hybrids form the bulk of the crop on the central stem, i.e. forming into one stem, if possible, leave stepchildren for 1-3 leaves, depending on the density of planting and the strength of plant development.
With extended cultivation, plants in greenhouses are formed into one stem with side stepchildren. When the cucumbers have 6-7 nodes, the lower part of the stem is blinded: at the first 5 nodes, the fruits and stepsons are completely removed, leaving the main stem, at the next 3-4 nodes, the stepsons pinch, but leave one fruit at each node. This technique allows you to strengthen young plants and get a higher early harvest. After that, all the fruits are left at 4-5 nodes and the stepsons are pinched over the first leaf. Then the stepsons are shortened over 2-3 sheets, depending on the thickening.
After the central stem reaches the top of the trellis, it is guided along the row and released downward at a distance of 0.7-1 m. The central stem is pinched at a distance of 0.9-1.0 m from the ground. As they age, the lower leaves are removed, which have begun to turn yellow or strongly thicken the planting. This technique allows you to improve the ventilation of greenhouses and thereby prevent plant diseases.
In an amateur greenhouse, it is recommended to plant several different hybrids. You can jointly plant well-branching hybrids with the longest fruiting period, with limited branching - there will be a rather long yield; with weak branching, lateral shoots are very short, the fruiting period lasts no more than one month.
The method of growing cucumbers in a greenhouse on a trellis has shown itself well, in this case it will be more convenient to care for the plants. Instead of a garter, we use pieces of nylon Chinese fishing net with a 70 mm mesh stretched along the rows of planted plants. In this case, there are no problems with the garter of plants, it is convenient to collect the zelents. We have tested the following parthenocarpic hybrids on the farm: Claudia F1, Marinda F1, Marcella F1, Matilda F1, Masha F1, Wilma F1, Karina F1, Morin F1, Mila F1, Herman F1, Amber F1, Nadine F1, Colet F1, Merengue F1, Clementheim F1, Bianca F1, Adam F1, Aztec F1, Aymur F1, AlexF1, Pasadena F1, Ekol F1, Profi F1, Crispina F1, Delpina F1, Karpa F1, Dolomite F1.
These varieties did not have problems with diseases, these are fruitful gherkin-type hybrids, each of them has its own special advantages, in terms of early maturity, duration of fruiting, taste, tuberosity, thickness of the skin, size of greenery, preservation, quality of salting, canning, degree of resistance to diseases, slower growth (do not outgrow). It should be remembered that the cucumbers should return to the previous garden no earlier than after 4-5 years.
I began this article by mentioning the famous room cucumber by M. V. Rytov that can withstand a lack of light. Unfortunately, the real Rytov varieties have not survived to this day. Therefore, finishing the article, I want to dwell a little on the modern hybrid of Asker F1 cucumber, such as a slicer (American salad cucumber), and Passandra F1. They can easily withstand dimming. If we compare the illumination by months, then in June the arrival of solar radiation averages 296 mJ / m2 (100%), in July - 302 mJ / m2 (102%), since August there has been a sharp decrease in the arrival of solar radiation - it is 225 mJ / m2 (76%), in September - 145 mJ / m2 (49%), in October - 64 mJ / m2 (22%), and in November - 28 mJ / m2 (9%) - according to NIIHZG. So in September-October, some more cucumbers can grow, and then they need backlighting.
Amateur vegetable growers can grow Asker F1 and the Passandra F1 hybrid in the summer-autumn turnover, they work well in indoor conditions, do not require pollination. We grew a Passandra F1 hybrid in a room using a simplified technology. We took two standard packages of the earthen mixture "For cucumbers", made two cross-shaped cuts in each of them, saturated the mixture with water. One seed of cucumber was planted in the cuts. There was a pallet on the farm (from an old electric stove). A layer of expanded clay was poured onto the pallet.
In the bags on the opposite side of the cruciform incisions, several incisions were made with a razor. Packages with planted cucumbers were placed on a pallet with expanded clay. During the growing season of cucumber plants, a nutrient solution of good complex fertilizers with microelements at a concentration of 0.1% was poured into the pan. After sowing in February, cucumbers were grown on the windowsill, the whips were sent along the twine. Seedlings were not highlighted. In April, they began to harvest, fruiting then proceeded until the end of November.