Do not allow living in a high-rise penthouse, small apartment or house with zero or limited yard space keep you from growing and enjoying Marketmore cucumbers. Marketmores are slicing cucumbers that grow well in large containers. These large, dark-green beauties are known for their high resistance to common cucumber diseases, including downy mildew, cucumber mosaic virus, scab and powdery mildew. Growing Marketmores in containers will give you more control over growing conditions and provide a convenient method for harvest.
Things You'll Need
Organic potting soil
20-20-20 fertilizer, water-soluble
5- to 6-foot bamboo reeds
Liquid feed, high potash
Move a 20-inch container into full sun. Fill the container with equal amounts of compost manure, coconut coir and organic potting soil. Because Marketmore cucumbers feed heavily on nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium, add 3 tbsp. of water-soluble 20-20-20 fertilizer to the top 6 inches of soil.
Attract and increase the soil's heat within the container by spreading a 3-inch layer of black mulch on top of the dirt. Marketmore cucumber seeds do best in soil temperatures of 65 degrees Fahrenheit and up for rapid germination in two to four days.
Build a tee-pee in the container to support the Marketmore cucumber plants. Push three 5- to 6-foot-tall bamboo reeds – evenly spaced around the outer circumference of the container – into the soil, 4 to 6 inches deep. Grasp the tops of the reeds and bring them together. Tie the tops together with garden string to create strong support for the Marketmores.
Sow the Marketmore cucumber seeds into the container when the temperature reaches a minimum of 65 degrees Fahrenheit each night. Move the black mulch, within the center of the container, to make room for the seeds to create a 6- to 8-inch clear radius. Drop three Marketmore cucumber seeds – placed on their sides – on top of the soil. Keep 2 to 3 inches of space between each Marketmore seed.
Cover the Marketmore seeds with 1 inch of soil. Leave the center section free of black mulch until the cucumber seeds germinate and grow larger.
Water the Marketmore seeds slowly with a watering can to avoid washing off the soil. Continue watering the Marketmores weekly, at least two or three times. Every two weeks add 1 to 2 tbsp. of high potash (potassium) liquid feed to your watering can when watering the cucumber plants. High levels of potash will encourage more flower development, which will produce more cucumbers.
Tie the young Marketmore plants to bamboo reeds when they are 6 inches tall. Use garden string to secure them.
Move the black mulch back into the center of the container, but far enough away from the base of the Marketmore cucumber stems to avoid producing fungal diseases.
Cut the Marketmore cucumbers off the plants when they grow at least 6 inches in length and form a dark green outer skin. The more you harvest Marketmore cucumbers off the vine, the more cucumbers you will have, so try to harvest daily.
Coconut coir is widely available at garden stores. Use coir in place of peat moss to aid in exceptional water retention within the soil. Purchase bagged coconut coir, since it will not require soaking. While waiting for outside temperatures to rise, insert a soil thermometer into the container’s soil after spreading the black mulch. The thermometer will accurately note the current temperature of the soil, allowing you to know exactly when to sow the Marketmore seeds. Grow flowers such as marigolds, clover and zinnias that attract honeybees and bumblebees near the Marketmore cucumbers. The bees do their jobs around the flowers, and in turn, pollinate the cucumbers.