Today there are many varieties of all fruits and vegetables, including cucumbers. We can find this type of vegetable in different shapes, sizes and shades of green. But nevertheless, the longest is the dutch cucumber, which we will talk about in this article.
If you are interested in this variety, I recommend that you keep reading. We will talk a little about its characteristics, how to prepare it to eat and how to grow it.
What is the long cucumber called?
Cucumber originates from India and belongs to the zucchini and melon family. Besides being very nutritious, it also has many medicinal qualities. Among them is its level of flavonoids, which are anti-inflammatory and help fight cancer. In addition, it should be noted that its water content is very high, making it a highly hydrating vegetable and highly recommended in diets that are low in calories.
Contrary to what we usually think, cucumber really is a fruit, not a vegetable. However, it is accepted at the culinary level to refer to it as a vegetable. There are different varieties of cucumbers that we are going to name and describe below:
- Short cucumber / Gherkin: Also called “Spanish type.” It is small with a maximum length of 15 centimeters. Its color is green with yellow or white stripes.
- Medium long cucumber: Known as “French type.” It is usually between 20 and 25 centimeters long.
- Long cucumber: Called ‘Dutch type’. It is made of smooth skin and exceeds 25 centimeters in length.
- Dutch cucumber: It is a variety of the fruit cucumber. It has a length of at least 25 centimeters and a straight shape. The skin is smooth and the color green.
Although the long cucumber really is the “Dutch type”, the one that really interests us is the longest cucumber of all: the Dutch cucumber. Although it is grown mainly in Spainits commercialization takes place throughout Europe and in some other places in the world. As time goes by, it is more common to find this variety in supermarkets. Who knows, maybe you’ve already tried it without knowing it.
How do you eat the Dutch cucumber?
There really isn’t much difference between a Dutch cucumber and other varieties. At the gustatory and optical level it is possible to distinguish, but it does not require any special way to prepare it. The most common way to consume cucumber is fresh through gazpacho, creams or in salads. However, there are many other recipes that include this delicious vegetable. So if you like to cook, I recommend that you do some experiments and be creative, since it is a very rich and good food for your health.
How is the Dutch cucumber grown?
When it comes to growing the Dutch cucumber, there are a number of aspects that we must take into account, such as, for example, the climate or the type of soil. Regarding the first point, we must consider that this vegetable is quite demanding, especially with regard to relative humidity. Dutch cucumber cultivation its development increases exponentially when humidity values are above 80%. However, the chances of the plant suffering from certain diseases such as botrytis or mildew are increased. Regarding temperatures, we are going to see which are the most recommended according to the stage of development:
- Germination temperature: Ideally, the temperature is between 20 and 30 ºC.
- Stem and leaf development temperature: Also in this case the temperature should be between 20 and 30 ºC.
- Fruit fattening temperature: For the fruit to grow fat, the temperature must be lowered to 15 to 20 ºC.
Dutch cucumber can be grown in any type of soil that has a pH that is between 5,5 and 7. It is also important to keep moisture well. In addition, the optimal depth to grow this vegetable is 40 to 50 centimeters. For this reason, it is essential to plow the soil well and eliminate obstacles such as stones, for example.
As its leaves perspire a lot in the heat and are large in size, this plant requires a lot of water. For this reason, drippers of two to three liters per hour and plant are usually available and whose irrigations usually last between forty minutes and one hour.
The Dutch cucumber is also quite demanding at the time of fertilization. It is capable of producing between eight and twelve kilos per square meter. The fertilizer needs of this variety in an area of one hectare, which is equivalent to ten thousand square meters, are the following:
- 400 kg of nitrogen
- 200 kg of phosphorus
- 450 kg of potassium
Also, the Dutch cucumber you need large amounts of calcium. However, it is the water that has to provide it.
Diseases and pests
Like all plants, the Dutch cucumber it can be affected by a fairly high number of pests and diseases. It is vitally important to detect them in time and treat them as soon as possible to prevent them from destroying the plants and spreading to other crops. The pests that may appear in this crop are the following:
- Red spider (Tetranychus urticae)
- Miner (Liriomyza spp.)
- White fly (bemisia tabaci)
- Nematodes (Meloidogyne spp.)
- Green donut (meager spodoptera)
- Thrips (Frankliniella occidentalis)
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There are also many diseases that can make Dutch cucumber plants suffer, such as these:
- Little Bryonia (Mycosphaerella citrulline)
- Fusarium oxysporum
- Mildew (Pseudoperonospora cubensis)
- Powdery mildew
- Rhizoctonia solani
Apart from these diseases there are also several types of viruses that can affect these crops. Dutch cucumber can be affected by the following viruses:
- CMV (cucumber mosaic virus)
- CuYV (Cucumber Yellowing Virus)
- CVYV (Cucumber Yellow Vein Virus)
- SqMV (Squash mosaic virus)
- WMV-2 (watermelon mosaic virus-2)
- ZYMV (zucchini yellow mosaic virus)
With all this information about the Dutch cucumber we already have everything we need to be able to grow it and prepare delicious meals with it.