Cucumbers are prone to attacks from cucumber beetles, which transmit bacterial wilt. Choose resistant varieties whenever possible. Protect young plants with floating row covers but remove covers when plants come into flower to ensure ample pollination.

by Dani Yokhna
PHOTO: WorSangJun/iStock/Thinkstock

Size: Vines grow up to 10 feet long.

Sunlight requirements: Full sun (A minimum of six to eight hours is ideal.)

Water requirements: Water weekly at most and mulch well; warm, dry conditions are best.

Soil requirements: Well-drained soil, rich in organic matter

When to plant: Direct-seed when soil temperatures reach 60 degrees F, or sow indoors in peat pots three to four weeks before transplanting.

Where to plant: Garden (grow up a trellis to save garden space); containers (miniature varieties)

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When to harvest: 50 to 65 days from seed for most varieties. (Pick mature fruits continually to encourage production.)

Produce storage: Store in plastic in the refrigerator or process into pickles.

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