Production Tips for a New Greenhouse Cucumber

Quirk Cucumbers for SnackingQuirk is an attention-grabbing mini cucumber with a striking contrast of bright green and white. It is a high yielder with excellent fruit uniformity and flavor. The 2-inch seedless fruits are burpless (meaning they contain no cucurbitacin, the compound that causes bitterness), making them ideal for snacking and pickling. The plants are widely adaptable and hardy, with a high resistance to powdery mildew, and produce consistently high yields, even in less than optimal growing conditions.  

Quirk has really stood out at variety trials, says Nate Gorlin-Crenshaw, Product Technician at Johnny’s Selected Seeds. Performing well in the greenhouseits remarkably compact plant habit, with short vines producing heavy yields, makes it ideal for container planting. Plants have all female flowers (gynoecious) and can set fruit without pollination (parthenocarpic). This cucumber has great utility in greenhouse and field production. 

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It is recommended to train ‘Quirk’ on Hortonova trellis with multiple leaders for optimal production. Home gardeners growing in containers can use a tomato cage or allow the vines to run unencumbered. Because of its high yields, daily harvests are best to avoid overgrown fruit. If seedless cucumbers cross-pollinate with seeded cucumbers, they will yield seeded fruits. Generally, seedless types are grown separately in enclosed environments with insect screens to prevent cross-pollination. 

Cucumber beetles are a perennial problem for any cucumber grower; however, Quirk resists damage particularly well. There are many choices in organic and conventional insecticides to control these pests if needed. Quirk has intermediate resistance to powdery mildew and cucumber mosaic virus. 

Gorlin-Crenshaw’s Recommendations for Growing Quirk Cucumber Successfully 

Fertilizer: Greenhouse cucumbers have high nutrient requirements, especially during peak fruit production. Nitrogen and potassium are required in the greatest amounts, though specific fertility requirements vary based on the growing media, production system, etc. 

Propagation: Seeds should be planted ½-inch to 1 inch deep. Soil temperature should be at least 70°F. Ideal germination occurs at 85°F. 

Plant growth regulators: None required 

Lighting: No artificial lighting is necessary. 

Pinching: Not needed 

Growing media: Well-drained soil high in fertility, with a pH of 6 to 6.8. Soil is ideal for container sales to home gardeners for transplanting. 

Irrigation: Water regularly, allowing the soil to dry down before the next watering. Consistent, adequate moisture is needed to produce an abundant crop. 

Planting and scheduling: 52 days to maturity from seeding, subtract about 10 days if transplanting. Average transplanting rate is 85 plants per 100 seeds. Do not disturb roots when transplanting. Once fruit bearing begins, expect to pick daily. 

Learn more about Quirk Cucumber at RijkZwaanUSA.com.