Why do cucumbers have prickles?

Asked By: Malainine Meierkort | Last Updated: 26th March, 2020
Category: medical health skin and dermatology
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Some might have tiny little hairs and others all out spines. The slicing varieties are usually less prickly while the pickling types are spinier. Native to India, cucumbers may have become spiny for the same reason that some animals are camouflaged or have horns…to protect themselves from predators.

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Similarly, you may ask, how do you get rid of cucumber spikes?

If the cucumbers have a lot of spines, remove them by rubbing a cloth or vegetable brush along the length of the fruit. The burpless varieties of cucumbers are susceptible to bruising. Lay them gently in a container as you gather the ripe fruit.

Secondly, are lemon cucumbers prickly? The young cucumbers have little prickly spikes on the skin, which start to dull and fall away as the fruit matures. Harvest – when the cucumbers have turned deep yellow and show lighter yellow stripes, they are ready to harvest. Use gloves to rub the outside to remove any remaining prickly spikes.

Correspondingly, what are spiky cucumbers called?

Our spiky-fruited vine is CUCUMIS ANGURIA, which many gardeners call Spiny Cucumber, but which in much of the world is known as the West India or Bur Gherkin. In North America often the name "gherkin" is used for pickles made of young regular garden cucumbers, so that name can be a little confusing to us.

How do you know when cucumbers are ready to be picked?

How to Tell When Cucumbers Are Ripe

  1. Squeeze the cucumber gently. A ripe cucumber is firm, with little to no give.
  2. View the color of the cucumber. A ripe cucumber is medium to dark green in color.
  3. Look at the tips and ends of the cucumber. Cracks or indentations are signs that the cucumber isn't right.
  4. Smell the outside of the cucumber.

37 Related Question Answers Found

How often should Cucumbers be watered?

Cucumbers are vigorous growers and therefore need between 1 and 2 inches of water per week, depending on the weather and the characteristics of your soil. The key is to keep the soil slightly moist at all times. Water deeply about once or twice a week — and more often if you're gardening in sandy soil.

Why are my cucumbers so prickly?

Both varieties may have varying degrees of cucumber prickles – so prickly cucumbers is actually quite normal. Some might have tiny little hairs and others all out spines. The slicing varieties are usually less prickly while the pickling types are spinier. This is no doubt the case with cucumbers.

How many cucumbers do you get per plant?

Cucumber Production
Generally, a healthy pickling cucumber plant produces about 5 pounds of cucumbers per plant. If you plant cucumbers for slicing and eating fresh, plan on growing about 2 to 3 plants per person in your household; healthy plants generally grow 10, 6-ounce cucumbers per plant.

How long does it take for cucumbers to grow after flowering?

After germination the first male flower would be seen within 35 to 55 days roughly, which will be later followed by developing a female flower in one or two weeks (i.e., 42 to 62 days). 3. The fertilized female flower will take 10 to 12 days to produce fruits.

How do you take care of cucumber plants?


Thin cucumber plants in rows to 1 or 2 feet apart, depending on the variety, when 3 to 4 inches tail. Thin cucumber plants in hills to the healthiest two plants when plants have two or three leaves. Keep soil evenly moist to prevent bitterness in cucumbers. Apply a thick layer of mulch about 4 weeks after planting.

Should I refrigerate cucumbers?

According to a post at Root Simple, cucumbers should be stored at room temperature – not in the refrigerator. Root Simple cites the University of California, Davis, which determined that cucumbers are sensitive to temperatures below 50°F. When stored at room temperature, cucumbers thrive and last longer.

Will cucumbers ripen off the vine?

Unlike tomatoes, stone fruit and avocados, cucumbers will not ripen off the vine. Cantaloupes, watermelons, and cucumbers are example of fruit that will not ripen further when removed from the vine. Pick the largest fruit first by cutting them from the vine and continually harvest fruit to encourage ongoing production.

Why are my homegrown cucumbers bitter?

Cucumbers plants that are stressed during the growing season may produce fruit that is bitter flavored. Commonly a lack of water or temperatures too cold or too hot cause cucumbers to bear bitter tasting fruit. Cucumbers contain organic compounds called cucurbitacins that can cause fruit to taste bitter.

Why are my cucumbers growing in weird shapes?


Reasons for a Deformed Cucumber
Poor pollination – If your cucumber is funny shaped, you might have a problem with pollination. Insufficient water – Sometimes your deformed cucumbers could be caused by moisture stress. Cucumbers require plenty of water throughout the growing season.

How do you pick cucumbers?

Look for firm cucumbers, without blemishes or soft spots, which can indicate they have started to rot. They should be dark green without any yellow spots, which develop as the cucumber is getting overly ripe. At that point, it will often produce off-flavors and odors.

What is an English cucumber?

English cucumbers, Cucumis sativus, were actually bred to create a cucumber without some of the more undesirable characteristics that this vegetable has, such as a tough outer skin, large seeds, and a bitter taste. They are also known as hothouse cucumber, burpless cucumber, seedless cucumber, and European cucumber.

How are pickles made from cucumbers?

The Pickling Brine
These pickles are made with a very basic brine of equal parts cider vinegar and water mixed with salt. This brine gets poured over the cucumbers — whole cukes, spears, or sliced coins — and transforms the vegetables into pickles.

Why do pickles have bumps?


Pickles are made from cucumbers, which naturally have little spines on their skin. These spines are usually rubbed off before being sold or processed, leaving behind little bumps on the surface of the skin.

How do you kill a wild cucumber vine?

The best way to control wild cucumber vines is to hoe or pull the plants as soon as you notice them in spring. If you don't notice them early in the season, you can mow the vines repeatedly to keep them in check. The most important thing is to get rid of the vines before they go to seed.

Can you eat cucumber with white spots?

Soft spots or wrinkled skin are warning signs that your cuke is aging. A common trait of a cucumber gone bad is moisture or slime on the surface. When cucumbers have gone bad, they become mushy and develop a white slimy surface and should not be eaten.