How to Prune Cucumbers
Cucumber plants grow so large with big leaves and several vines and stems. Cucumber plants often need pruning so that the plants can devote more nutrients and energy to the most productive parts of the plants.
The main reason for pruning in cucumbers is because of the excessive vines produced by the crop.
Pruning can be an interesting exercise or work for cucumber farmers and gardeners.
The question is now, how do you prune your cucumbers so that you will not cause damages that can negatively impact the health of the plants and the yield.
Can pruning improve the yield in cucumber farming?
How to prune cucumber plants
The age and height of the cucumber plants should be checked before pruning. Pruning is generally advised to be done when the cucumber plants are 3-5 weeks old and 1 – 2 feet in height. Pruning at a very early stage can damage the cucumber plant.
Pruning should be done every 7 – 14 days. When you prune your cucumber plants frequently, the energy and the nutrients of the plants can be conserved and channeled to the parts of the plants where they are most needed.
Cucumber plants should be pruned immediately they develop visible suckers. The suckers should be nipped from the stem using a garden shear.
All diseased parts of the plant especially diseased vines, flowers and fruits should be removed from the plant. This will ensure that the cucumber plant does not devote its energy to the parts that will not yield any positive result.
Suckers grow laterally off the main vines. After locating the suckers, they should be pruned with a pruning shear.
It should be noted that leaving suckers on the plants will lead to a lower overall yield and smaller cucumber fruits.
After cutting the suckers, the vines of the cucumber plants should be trained to attach to the trellis or staking ropes or nets.
Clips may be used to hold the cucumber vines and plants to the staking ropes.
Advantages of pruning in cucumber farming
Pruning can make the cucumber plants free of diseases as all diseased parts of the plants are removed during the process of pruning.
Pruning can increase the yield of the cucumber plant as more energy and nutrients are diverted to the production of flowers and fruits.
Pruning improves aeration in cucumber farms; this can reduce the chances of the plants getting fungal diseases.
Pruning can make the plants produce bigger cucumbers.
Pruning of cucumbers is the right way to go if you want to achieve great yields in your cucumber farm.