Video: How To Grow A Lemon Cucumber
India has long been considered the homeland of cucumber, where there is information about its primary introduction into agricultural culture. Of the huge number of varieties of cucumbers that have practical application, varieties with fruits predominantly elongated, cylindrical or oval-cylindrical are mainly used.
But there are also varieties with oval, rounded, ovoid fruits. Some unconventional forms of cucumber are common in the Himalayas. They are characterized by early maturity, medium-sized spherical fruits.
Perhaps the only spherical cucumber variety that has taken root in Europe is CRYSTAL APPLE ("crystal apple"). It is his seeds that can be found on sale in stores in Western Europe. In Russia and on the territory of the former USSR, this variety got its second name "lemon-cucumber" for its striking external resemblance to lemon fruits. The similarity is purely visual, and the cucumber, of course, has nothing to do with lemon. Therefore, let the dreamers-gardeners who decided to drink tea with lemon-cucumber leave their desires.
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For the first time, cucumber plantings of "crystal apple" appeared on my site in 1995. The plant transferred from Western Europe was zoned by me for 8 years with selection in the direction of fixing the signs of the female structure of flowers. Due to the fact that by its nature cucumber is a short-day plant, when this variety was transferred to the conditions of the Moscow region with a more severe climate and a different illumination regime, a large number of male-type plants grew in the early years. Tangible results in the reorientation of the variety towards the female direction began to appear in the fifth year. At the same time, I note that during the acclimatization of some varieties of melons, squash, pumpkins and other monoecious representatives of the pumpkin family, we have to work in this direction.
The "crystal apple" cucumber (or "lemon cucumber") has a powerful bush structure. The main stem is slightly thicker and the leaf is larger than many traditional varieties. The length of the main stem can reach 5 m, therefore, when growing a cucumber on trellises (twines) in a greenhouse, the stem, reaching 2 m, is thrown down through a horizontal wire carrying the twine and then grown in a hanging form. Many round and rounded-ovoid fruits are formed both on the main stem and in the axils of the first and second leaves on the stepsons.
This variety has tremendous vigor. To speed up the setting of fruits, the stepsons over the first or second leaf are preferably minted on the ovary. The increase in yield is greatly influenced by the thickening of the plantings. When grown in a greenhouse in a vertical culture closer than 1 m per line, it is not recommended to plant the plants.
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For example, if you have a bed 3 m long and 1 m wide, then when growing in two lines more than eight plants on this bed are impractical to plant, since due to low illumination of the inner parts of the plants as a result of thickening, the yield decreases. By the way, this condition is generally accepted for cucumbers in general. Naturally, "lemon cucumber" can be grown in a creeping form, planting seedlings in open ground after the end of the frost.
The "crystal apple" cucumber is a monoecious plant with male and female flowers. Anyone who will grow this variety for the first time and carry out manual pollination to obtain seeds should pay attention to the fact that the ovaries on female flowers are hardly noticeable, and in order to distinguish a male flower from a female one, you need to carefully look: the ovary on a female flower looks like small round "pea".
Agricultural technology at the "crystal apple" is traditional. This plant is very moisture-loving. A critical period in the demand for moisture occurs during mass flowering, the formation and growth of ovaries and fruiting. Therefore, it is necessary to maintain an optimal regime of soil and air moisture. We must strive to ensure that the earth is always only slightly moist. It is better to water in the furrows or at the root so that water does not fall on the leaves in order to avoid sunburn if watering is on a clear day. Despite the fact that in comparison with the well-known varieties, "cucumber-lemon" proved to be resistant to cold snaps and diseases, it is not recommended to water it by sprinkling over the leaves at night in areas with cool nights according to the principle: "do not overdo it", because this can lead to illness.
The "crystal apple" cucumber is interesting for its original rounded and round-ovoid fruits that have the taste of an ordinary cucumber, crisp, sweet and aromatic. Fruits at a young age have a slight white pubescence and are used for food at the stage of greens, about 7-8 cm in length and weighing about 50 g. "Cucumber-lemon" has shown itself as a variety of medium ripening, blooms 30-40 days after emergence seedlings.
An interesting feature of this variety is the transformation of zelents into "lemons". As they ripen, the testes acquire the shape and color of a real lemon, you can't tell - that's where this second name of the variety comes from. So, "crystal apple" is a resistant variety of cucumbers with spherical and rounded-ovoid fruits, producing 8-10 kg of amazing fruits per plant per season and fruiting until frost. It is not a hybrid, pollinated by insects. Full seed can be obtained from the original plant only if it is isolated from pollen from plants of other varieties of cucumbers. It is always pleasant to grow something unconventional on your site in order to get in touch with nature once again. I wish you the same.