Growing Cucumbers Vertically | How to Grow Cucumbers in Small Gardens

Learn How to Grow Cucumbers Vertically to get a bountiful harvest. Planting Cucumbers this way will also save space, which is ideal for small gardens.

growing cucumbers vertically

Cucumber is a refreshing vegetable, especially if picked up fresh. It is known for its crunchy and refreshing taste and is eaten in a variety of ways: raw in salads, cooked, or pickled! It is easy to grow and requires a warm, sunny exposure and deep and regular watering.

Discover the names of the best climbing vegetables you can grow vertically here


Benefits of Growing Cucumbers Vertically

One advantage of Growing Cucumbers Vertically is that you can avoid a common problem of fruit rot associated with cucumber cultivation. It happens when fruits sit in moist soil for a prolonged period.

When you allow cucumber vines to grow vertically, it improves the air circulation around the plant that prevents fungal diseases. Cucumber plants have a sprawling habit, and growing cucumbers vertically allow their leaves to absorb more sun, which results in healthy plant and large cucumbers. One more key benefit is that you can harvest the fruits more easily and on time.

Why Should You Grow Cucumbers Vertically?

When cucumbers are grown on the ground (horizontally), they usually cover 10-20 square feet of space–plant sprawls over the surface around it. However, smaller and bushier varieties take only 1/3 of this space, but they produce fewer fruits.

Climbing, vine-type varieties are more productive, and when you grow them vertically, they barely take 1-2 square feet of space, climbing up by the support of a trellis or cage.

Learn how to grow cucumbers on trellis here


How to Grow Cucumbers Vertically cucumber on trellis in pot

Choosing a Container and Trellis

If you’re growing cucumbers in containers vertically, prefer large containers that are more than 12 inches deep and wide; for a non-bushier vining variety, select a much bigger 18 inches size pot.

How many cucumber plants you can grow in such a container depends on the variety you are planting. A vining variety grows tall and sends long roots, so it needs a large pot, whereas bushier varieties are short and can be grown in standard size pots.

Trellis Size

Choose a 5 to 6 feet tall trellis that is sturdy and doesn’t topple. If growing climbing varieties, use “A-frame trellis” so that the plant crawls up and down from it easily. You can also use coir ropes to direct the vines.

Want to make homemade cucumber trellis? Check out these free projects here


Propagation and Planting Cucumbers

Sow seeds directly onto the desired spot or in small pots. Cover them with about 2 cm of soil. Once the seedlings germinate and have a few true leaves, transplant the healthiest of them into a bigger pot or on the frost-free ground in spring or summer, ideally, when the soil temperature is at least around 65 F (18 C) or more.

If you live in a tropical or subtropical climate, you can grow cucumbers year-round.

The cucumber plant is a heavy feeder like tomatoes–prepare your soil well before planting it on the ground by incorporating well-rotted manure and compost.

Don’t miss these tomato growing tips in pots here


Requirements for Growing Cucumbers Vertically

Position

Cucumber loves a location that is warm and has sunny exposure, it should be less windy, too, but air circulation must not be compromised. And because cucumber originated in South Asia, it does not like temperature dipping below 50 F (10 C). The optimum temperature to grow cucumbers falls in the range of 60–95 F (15–35 C).

Soil

It prefers well-drained, loose and deep soil, rich in organic matter and neutral in pH. For containers, you can use your potting mix enriched with good quality compost or organic cattle manure.

Learn how to grow perennial cucumber vegetable here 

Watering

Regular and deep watering is the key to get productive cucumber harvest. It is due to the high water content of its fruits. While watering, avoid wetting the foliage as it may encourage fungal diseases.

Mulching

If you’re growing cucumber in your garden, it’s important to mulch around the base of the plant to improve the moisture-retaining ability of the soil.

Fertilizer

At the time of planting, mix all-purpose slow-release fertilizer in the soil. Once the plant starts to flower, side-dress with aged manure, also apply balanced liquid fertilizer at that time according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

You can also use Epsom salt on your cucumber plants. To learn more, click here


Diseases and Pests

Cucumber plants particularly suffer from anthracnose, powdery mildew, downy mildew, and leaf spot. To learn more about the diseases and how to save your plant from them, check out this informative article here. In pests, look out for aphids, spider mites, whiteflies, and other common garden pests.

To reduce disease and pest related problems, follow these measures: Regularly check your plants for early signs, provide good air circulation, avoid overhead watering, grow resistant varieties, and don’t plant your cucumber plant at the same location for more than 2-3 years (applicable when growing cucumbers in the garden bed).


Harvesting Cucumbers

When and How to Harvest Cucumbers?

Cucumbers are ready for harvest in 60 to 90 days, depending more on the variety and growing conditions. Pick them when they are developed enough, firm on touch, smooth to look, and crunchy in taste. Do not let the fruits overripe!

What are the best pickling cucumber varieties? Find their names here

 

29 COMMENTS

  1. Thank you so much for the informative post! I am planing to harvest cucumbers this year in my garden, so I try to collect as much as possible useful information. Your tips are very helpful and well explained. Best regards

    • You can use tomato cages but cucumbers grow quickly and climb high, it would be better if you can stack two pairs of tomato cages stacked together vertically. Anything that is 5-6′ works best.

  2. Very helpful tips. The last couple years I have not been able to grow cucumbers and wasn’t sure why. Hopefully now I will reap a bountiful harvest

  3. What kind of trelis do you provide for the plants? You say 5 – 6 ” tall framework, but what do the plants cling to while they are growing tall?

  4. I planted cucumbers two years back, but my production was not so good. Thank you for this useful exciting information. I am planning to prepare from tomorrow.

  5. 2 sections pf hogwhire connected with appropriate connectors will for m a tent like structure that is self supporting. When not in use it folds in half. I have also used it for tomatoes but on its side rather than upright.

  6. Didn’t know there where bush cucumbers and vine cucumbers. Thx for info. Is t same thing true of zucchini? My zucchini went nowhere despite trellis ready for it

  7. You forgot to mention Cucumber Beetle. Very destructive here in Connecticut. The beetle itself just does some leaf & bud munching, but it carries the virus that kills the plant. I have resorted to Remay cloth to cover and only grow self seeding varieties. Had a nice Pickle Type harvest this year with “Little leaf” variety.

  8. Will a fanned trellis with chicken wire wrapped around it,..work good ? As long as I follow your great instruction of how-to.

  9. Cucumbers are classified as either vining types or bush types. Vining types should be chosen for vertical gardening, as they will grow straight up a vertical support.

  10. Cucumbers are classified as either vining types or bush types. Vining types should be chosen for vertical gardening, as they will grow straight up a vertical support.

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