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The cultivation of cucumbers has long become a truly nationwide occupation in Russia. Although most of the domestic territories are not ideal for growing the plant, this is not at all surprising, especially given the conditions of the country - the homeland of cucumbers - India. Nevertheless, in most regions, cucumbers are successfully grown and almost everywhere, even in the open field. The huge Ural region is no exception. But in order to understand what properties the varieties should have, the cultivation of which in the open field in the Urals will bring the greatest effect, you must first understand the main qualities of the culture itself and the climatic features of the region.
The main properties of cucumbers
In our conditions, cucumbers are an annual plant, a herb that has a stem creeping along the ground or branching. The height of cucumbers rarely exceeds 2 meters. The type of the plant's root system is superficial, located no deeper than 1 meter, and the main part is within 15-25 cm. Given the origin, it is not surprising that the cucumber has several properties at once, which are extremely problematic to ensure the implementation of which in domestic conditions.
- The heat-loving nature of a vegetable is one of the main reasons that its cultivation in greenhouses and greenhouses has become so widespread. So, it is easier to ensure the optimum temperature for the cucumber. Nevertheless, with the competent use of agrotechnical methods, it is quite possible to achieve good yields in the open ground of central Russia, which includes most of the Urals. In addition, varieties and hybrids with increased resistance to cold temperatures were bred back in Soviet times. In recent years, this work has not stopped, as a result, the number of varieties of cucumbers that are most suitable for growing in open ground in domestic conditions has become quite large.
- Moisture-loving is another property of cucumbers, predetermined by the climate of its place of origin. It is not surprising that the amount of precipitation even in the Russian regions with their maximum level is clearly insufficient for the normal growth and fruiting of the plant. Therefore, it is always necessary to organize regular and sufficiently plentiful watering of cucumbers, which is required even by the most unpretentious varieties. Naturally, there are situations where excessive moisture occurs, but they are so rare and only happen to very inexperienced gardeners.
- Even in the most favorable conditions of the Kuban, in order to obtain a good harvest of cucumbers, it is necessary to feed with various nutritious organic or mineral substances. If we are talking about the middle lane, where soils, especially in open ground, are of much lower quality, the importance of correct and timely feeding increases even more. Therefore, it is so necessary to strictly follow the recommendations of specialists related to this topic.
- A plant's photoperiod is the amount of daylight required for normal growth and development. For all the thermophilicity of cucumbers, their physiology requires only 10-12 hours of photoperiod for full ripening and fruiting. This greatly facilitates the task for domestic gardeners, since for most of the country this is a completely feasible condition, moreover, in some areas, certain varieties of cucumbers take root well even in shady and poorly lit areas of gardens and vegetable gardens.
Climatic and natural features of the Urals
After identifying the basic requirements for cucumbers as a vegetable crop, it is necessary to analyze which of them satisfy the conditions of the Ural region.
It should be borne in mind that the Urals is a huge territory, the natural and climatic conditions inside which are also quite different from each other. Nevertheless, some generalizing conclusions can be drawn.
Like most regions of central Russia, the Urals belongs to the zone of risky farming. This means that growing crops such as cucumbers carries a significant risk of naturally occurring crop failures. The main ones are the rather early onset of cold weather and the possibility of frost, as well as an extremely short period of stable warm weather.
These and many other features of agriculture in the Urals are caused by an even sharper continental climate, even in comparison with the middle zone of the European part of Russia. In order to minimize the climate factor, several rules should be followed:
- always use several different varieties or hybrids of cucumbers (3 to 7). The meaning of such an event is that out of so many varieties of cucumbers, several are the most suitable for the specific conditions of the season and will give a decent harvest, even if the rest are not born;
- pay special attention to such qualities and properties of varieties and hybrids of cucumbers as cold resistance, disease resistance and ripening rate (preferably no more than 45 days). Late varieties of plants are not very suitable for use in the Urals;
- Another important property for the region under consideration is the use of self-pollinating or parthencarpic varieties of cucumbers. They are recommended for use in greenhouses and greenhouses, but for the open ground of the Urals, their use is simply necessary. This is due to the fact that the number of sunny and warm days is extremely small, and it is in this weather that the bees are most active. In cloudy and relatively cold weather, their activity sharply decreases, which leads to problems with fruiting in bee-pollinated varieties of cucumbers. It should also be borne in mind that the complete exclusion of bee-pollinated plant varieties is impractical, since their presence in the garden has a positive effect on other varieties of cucumbers and increases yield;
- in the event of a cold temperature, and such days in the Urals are not uncommon, experts recommend covering the beds with cucumbers for their additional protection with ordinary plastic wrap or covering materials of similar properties on a non-woven base. Arched support structures, light and removable, are allowed.
Following these rules will increase the yield of cucumbers even in the difficult conditions of the Ural region.
The best varieties of cucumbers for open ground in the Urals
When choosing a variety or hybrid of cucumbers, in addition to the above preferences, you should definitely pay attention to the fact that it is zoned specifically for local conditions.
Cucumber hybrid April F1
The April F1 hybrid is specially bred for cultivation in the open field. However, its properties make it possible to achieve excellent results when used in greenhouses, and even when grown in conditions of small spaces in balcony boxes. The hybrid is universal not only in the place of cultivation, but also in taste - it is excellent both for fresh consumption and for canning and salting. In addition, the April F1 hybrid is resistant to such common diseases and viruses as olive spot and common mosaic.
The combination of outstanding qualities has made the hybrid one of the most popular among those used in central Russia.
The cucumbers of the hybrid have characteristic large tubercles, a classic dark green skin and a pleasant white flesh. The fruits are rather large in size, reaching a mass of 200-250 grams, and in length quite often exceed 20 cm. Each node of the hybrid forms 8-12 cucumbers. The hybrid belongs to the mid-season, guaranteeing the first harvest in 50 days.
Cucumber variety Erofey
The Erofey variety was bred by breeders specifically for central Russia. The properties and qualities of the variety allow its use in the difficult conditions of the Ural region. Despite the fact that the cucumber variety is bee-pollinated, due to its unpretentiousness and resistance to cold temperatures, it does not experience problems with fruiting in relatively cold and cloudy weather. Being a mid-ripening variety of cucumbers, it guarantees the first harvest in 50 days. The plant is very tall and branched, while the cucumbers are small (about 6-7 cm), referring to the gherkins. The variety is also quite resistant to diseases and viruses. In terms of taste, it belongs to the universal, perfectly manifesting itself in fresh form, as well as when canning and salting.
Cucumber variety Competitor
Bred for outdoor use, the Competitive cucumber variety is often used without any problems when grown under a film cover. This is achieved by the versatility of its qualities, the main of which are excellent yield, resistance to most diseases, as well as excellent taste. Together, this has led to great popularity and widespread distribution of the plant variety.
Cucumbers appear in 45-50 days, that is, the cucumber variety is early ripening. Fruits are of average size, usually not exceeding 12 cm in length, and their weight rarely reaches 125 grams.
Quite large tubercles are located along the entire surface of an elongated oval or elongated cylindrical cucumber. The variety is most suitable for pickling, although it is also often used in fresh and pickled forms.
Cucumber hybrid Ant F1
Ant F1 hybrid is perfect for the Urals due to several qualities at once. First, it belongs to the parthenocarpic, that is, it bears fruit regardless of the activity of the bees. Secondly, the cucumber hybrid is ultra-early ripening, which guarantees the possibility of the first harvest in 35-39 days. Thirdly, it is highly resistant to several diseases at once, namely both types of powdery mildew (both real and false) and olive spot. Cucumbers have a cylindrical shape and are covered with large tubercles. The length of the hybrid fruit rarely exceeds 12 cm.
Cucumber hybrid Masha F1
Hybrid Masha F1 has become widespread in recent years due to its properties, which are excellent for the domestic middle lane.
It belongs to the parthenocarpic and ultra-early ripening types of cucumbers, which ideally corresponds to the requirements imposed by the difficult climatic conditions of the Urals. In addition, the hybrid has a long fruiting period, allowing you to get a high yield, making the most of the short Ural summer. Fruits are of the size of gherkins, genetically devoid of bitterness. Moreover, their excellent taste, both fresh and canned, are noted by most experts. An additional plus is the resistance grafted to the hybrid to many diseases common in domestic conditions.
Cucumber variety Muromsky 36
The Muromsky 36 variety has a number of undoubted advantages that allow not only growing it in the open ground of the Urals, but also achieving excellent results. It belongs to early ripening, which makes it possible to harvest as early as 35-40 days. Possesses residual disease resistance. In addition, the fruit has excellent palatability, being medium to less than medium in size (6-9 cm) and more like gherkins. Like most of these crops, it is extremely picky about frequent and timely collection, since cucumbers quickly lose color, acquiring yellowness. They are either small lumpy or smooth, shaped like an ellipse or an egg.
There are many varieties and hybrids of cucumbers that are perfect for growing in the open field of the Urals. With their competent cultivation, the gardener will be able to fully feel all the delights and advantages of the most popular and beloved vegetable in Russia.