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If cucumbers are sown by yourself, they must be pricked out after the first seedlings appear. This is not easy with the delicate cucumber plants. The following article explains how to do it correctly.

In a nutshell

  • Separate seedlings that are close together and put them in another place
  • watch out for vulnerable roots
  • Avoid pricking out when seeds are sown directly into small pots one at a time
  • if the first two leaves appear, it can be pricked out

The right moment

There are certain rules when the cucumbers (Cucumis sativus) have to be pricked out. This also includes the right time. If several seeds were sown together in a pre-sowing container, the seedlings could crowd each other after a few weeks:

  • when the first two leaves form
  • ideal time
  • no longer wait
  • Cucumber plants shoot up quickly

Tip: Because the small cucumber plants grow so quickly, the roots and stems are often very weak and can break very quickly if they are touched. Therefore, you need to work with special care here.

Required material

When selecting the seeds, care should be taken to ensure that the cucumber species is robust. In this case, the seedlings are more robust and can be pricked out more easily. For sowing, the seeds can be placed in larger pots with potting soil. Afterwards, for later pricking the cucumbers, the following materials are required:

Young cucumber plants are available from the garden store or from the gardener.
  • rotting pots
  • alternatively choose egg cartons
  • commercially available pricking soil
  • Algae substrate
  • tweezers or spoon

Tip: A spoon is always good when pricking out plants. Because with this you can carefully lift the seedlings together with the roots out of the ground.

prick cucumbers

When the right time has been reached for the small cucumber plants to be pricked out, it is important to be particularly careful when doing this:

  • fill rotting small pots with pricking soil
  • sieve them beforehand
  • Poke a small planting hole in the middle
  • Use a spoon or fingers for this
  • add some substrate from algae
  • carefully remove the seedlings from the nursery pot
  • with tweezers or spoon
  • put in the prepared pot
  • fill up with more pricking soil
  • Press lightly and pour carefully

Notice: After pricking out the seedlings, they should first be placed in a location that is protected from drafts and sun. This can be a greenhouse but also a windowsill. This is important for the reason that the plants do not suffer transplant shock.

following time

After the seedlings have been pricked out, they have more space and thus form a stronger growth. More roots can also be formed in the new pot. Nevertheless, the cucumbers should not be placed outdoors too early in the large bed:

  • Plants need to get used to the new pot
  • Roots branch out more
  • the more roots, the better water absorption
  • only put it outside when the outside temperature is 15°
  • only in pots during the day
  • can slowly get used to UV radiation
  • as well as the outdoor climate

Notice: After pricking out, the cucumbers only need enough lukewarm water and a little fertilizer. In order for the cucumbers to grow upwards, they should be guided on poles or a trellis.

frequently asked Questions

How else can I sow my cucumbers?

If the cucumbers are not to be pricked out after sowing and the sprouting of the tender seedlings, then you can put the seeds directly into individual pots. There are special seed pots for this, which can be placed in the ground together with the seedling and then rot here afterwards. Egg cartons are also suitable for this. So you can be sure that the roots will not be damaged.

Can I grow my cucumber plants outdoors?

In the local latitudes, it is recommended not to plant cucumbers outdoors in a bed, but rather to use a greenhouse. Not only is it warmer here earlier than outdoors, the plants are also better protected from pests and diseases. After pricking out, the seedlings are then simply planted in the prepared soil in the greenhouse.

When can I transplant the transplanted plants into the bed?

When the small plants have reached a height of about 20 centimeters, they can be transplanted into the bed. This is usually around the end of April. Here, the cucumbers are planted with the root ball at the intended location outdoors, in a greenhouse or in a large tub. Make sure that they are as deep as they were in the pricking vessel. Decomposable seed pots do not have to be removed before planting.

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