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What Farmers Must Know About Growing Cucumber Seedlings

Cucumber farming is profitable but also demanding. Many factors affect crop success. Therefore, it is essential to start propagation with quality cucumber seedlings for sale from bulk nurseries that specialise in selling vegetable plugs to farmers.

What else should a newcomer to farming with the crop know?

  Read on, as the main factors to consider in farming with cucumbers are discussed below, including mistakes to avoid, where to find vegetable plugs for sale, and why it matters where the farmer gets the plant stock.   First, a look at why cucumbers are considered important crops. For one, the plant is renowned for its health properties. It is also widely used in the beauty industry as part of cosmetics for skin improvement.   One of the downsides of farming with cucumber is the relatively short shelf life of the vegetable. It is best to get the harvested product to the market as soon as possible. Farmers should make sure they have adequate storage facilities and means to get the produce to their intended market as soon as possible after harvesting.   Mistakes to avoid when farming from seedlings include:  
  • Overwatering
  • Not adhering to minimum spacing needs
  • Harvesting too late or too early
  • Not considering the daytime hours required for optimal flowering
  • Incorrect application of fertilizers
  • Failure to remove weeds and pests that can affect crop quality and yield
  • Not buying quality seedlings from reputable suppliers
  As with any other vegetable crop, it is imperative to follow the transplanting guidelines from the seedling supplier. Soil must be prepared well in advance, proper irrigation must be in place, and the soil pH must be adapted through nutrient application to create the right growth medium for the vegetable. Below are tips that farmers can follow when growing these vegetable crops from seedlings:  

Adhere to Irrigation Best Practices

  Overhead sprinkler-type irrigation is not recommended for cucumbers, as it can cause damage to the foliage, flowers, and fruits. Drip irrigation works well because the plant receives water at its roots for fast and efficient water uptake. Less water is wasted, and the farmer has more control over the water volume to prevent overwatering and underwatering. Plugs should never be transplanted to dry soil. It is essential to irrigate the soil before and after transplant to help the plants establish and minimise transplant shock.  

Leave Sufficient Space Between the Plants

  With cucumber plants known for having rather thick foliage, to ensure all parts of the plant receive enough light and airflow, the farmer should plant the plugs spaced far enough to allow for maximum airflow. To this end, consult with the agronomists at Hishtil SA about adequate spacing for these crops. When planted too close to each other, the plants become extra vulnerable to the spreading of pests and diseases.  

Harvest at the Right Time

  It is fairly easy to fall into the trap of waiting until the fruits are big before harvesting. But care should be taken not to harvest too late. If the plant has pushed too much energy into the fruits, it will not have that much left to give for more flowering and fruiting. For optimal yields, harvest when ready.  

Where to Buy Cucumber Seedlings in South Africa

  Starting crop farming with quality seedlings gives the farmer a good foundation for yield success. To this end, it is imperative to buy disease- and pest-free plugs from a bulk supplier, esteemed for compliance with quality control requirements, protection of the plant stock, and market requirements. The supplier should be able to deliver the stock to the farmer.   Hishtil SA meets these requirements with GlobalGAP 2021 certification as proof of market and industry standard requirement compliance. In addition, the bulk supply nursery meets compliance requirements of ISO 9001:2000 for quality management systems. These prove the nursery’s commitment to growing premium-quality plant stock.   Hishtil SA offers both grafted and ungrafted plugs to meet the farmer’s growing, yield, and disease-tolerance requirements for the particular crop. The plugs are grown in special greenhouse facilities where the plants are protected against diseases and pests. The plugs are also chemically treated before delivery to the farmer anywhere in South Africa.   Farmers wanting more information about varieties and prices for cucumber seedlings can get in touch with Hishtil SA here.   Cucumber Seedlings   Sources: