Cucumber aborting question.

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MikA
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Cucumber aborting question.

Postby MikA » Thu Jul 28, 2011 1:29 pm

My Cucumber Cucino is producing loads of mini fruit but this morning I have noticed a lot of them have aborted on one of the 2 plants.
There are still plenty to grow and pick so are cucumbers self regulating - balancing their fruit production to their environment?

:?: Could this be because the weather is hotter now and as the compost won't hold water I am not getting enough water into it? I am watering a small amount 2 or 3 times a day and feeding every 2 days.
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Re: Cucumber aborting question.

Postby Nature's Babe » Thu Jul 28, 2011 6:16 pm

Hi MikA. I think it means those particular ones were not fertilised, do you have lots of pollinators?
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Re: Cucumber aborting question.

Postby MikA » Thu Jul 28, 2011 6:59 pm

NB -
All female variety I'm afraid although I did find one male flower which I quickly removed.
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Re: Cucumber aborting question.

Postby oldherbaceous » Thu Jul 28, 2011 7:28 pm

Evening MikA, this often happens if the plant has quite a few cucumbers growing at the same time, once these have been harvested it should start producing again.

Just nip off any that are still on the plant and have gone yellow.

I suppose this happens when the plant can not take up enough water and food to supply the top growth.
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Re: Cucumber aborting question.

Postby Mike Vogel » Thu Jul 28, 2011 11:21 pm

I looked up "Bitter Cucumbers" on google and found a number of sites. The 2 questions may be related. The problem may be that the weather has NOT been all that hot, because cool conditions and/or erratic watering are suggested as reasons for getting bitter fruit - I wonder whether they may also be connected with fruit not developing.
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MikA
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Re: Cucumber aborting question.

Postby MikA » Fri Jul 29, 2011 6:42 am

Thanks Mike

The fruit all taste great with no bitterness so I think it is just down to getting the watering correct in this variable weather.

Perhaps I am asking them to do too much. The one is running along the ridge and the other has side shoots - all trying to produce multiple fruits at each node. I've cut back several large leaves to get at the fruit as it was getting a bit junglified and filling the end of the small greenhouse.

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Re: Cucumber aborting question.

Postby Nature's Babe » Fri Jul 29, 2011 10:21 am

Could this be because the weather is hotter now and as the compost won't hold water I am not getting enough water into it? I am watering a small amount 2 or 3 times a day and feeding every 2 days.

Firstly you are doing something right if the cucumbers taste great. :D
I was interested in your comment that the compost won't hold water MikeA that could be the cause of the irregular moisture levels if it is drying out very quickly. One answer might be to sdd some water retaining granules next time you plant cucumbers. Alternatively if you have a soil border plant in the border mulch with or incorporate some good home made compost to feed the soil and add moisture retaining humus. , I am going to try Sarah's idea of an old fashioned hot bed on one side of the greenhouse which will warm the soil for a very early crop first, then plant cucumbers and melons into it, they are very heavy feeders and when you are watering that much in hot weather artificial fertilisers are leached out of the soil very quickly. Feeding with compost and manure is more slow release and taken up by the plants as they need it. It's a matterof personal choice what suits you and your situation. Also consider some greenhouse shading as that will help slow
evaporation.
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Re: Cucumber aborting question.

Postby MikA » Fri Jul 29, 2011 1:57 pm

Hi NB,

I raised a topic at the start of June about the slimy liquid passing straight through the Miracle Grow growbags - viewtopic.php?f=3&t=9757

This is the main problem as to why they don't hold water. I shall certainly try a different compost next year and if I buy growbags I will empty them out and mix in some water retaining granules as you recommend and put it into large pots. 1 per plant.
My home made compost doesn't get hot enough to kill all the plant seeds (we have had a couple of tomatoes in the raised beds) and I only get a limited amount which is used as a general soil improver around the borders

My greenhouse is small and on a patio so options are pretty limited.
I'm quite jealous of all you lucky people with more room. :mrgreen:

This year is a first year big learning curve - greenhouse varieties are a success but the compost not so.
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Re: Cucumber aborting question.

Postby Tony Hague » Fri Jul 29, 2011 2:03 pm

If it is any help, I tried the miracle grow peat-free one year, and it was not good. Mine developed a white mould all through it !
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Re: Cucumber aborting question.

Postby Nature's Babe » Fri Jul 29, 2011 2:26 pm

I think Which reported on the best three potting composts check them out if you can?
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