When it comes to you growing both peppers and cucumbers then it is entirely possible to do so with them together and this does, as a result, lead to a number of important points that we need to cover to make sure that you are more than content with the end result that you are able to achieve. Now, we are not saying that you are going to be absolutely assured of getting a fantastic crop of both as it does still come down to you taking real care over things, but this guide should at least make it more likely.
1. The Key Items You are Going to Need.
The first thing for us to do is to look at the different items that we feel you are going to need in order to grow both of those plants and the good news is that you basically need the exact same things for both and there is nothing really specialized that is required. Now, it is not exactly an extensive list but at the same time, everything listed below is pretty important so do keep that in mind.
That being said, the list of items that you are going to need in order to grow both peppers and cucumbers are as follows.
- Pepper seeds.
- Cucumber seeds.
- Pots for them to grow in.
- Soil for them to grow in.
- Some kind of support structure which may be garden stakes.
- A quality fertilizer that will be suitable for both plants.
- A trowel to make planting easier.
- A watering can.
- Possibly some mulch but that is optional.
As you can see, we are not talking about too many items that are required so there really is no excuse for not giving it a go.
2. The Key Steps for Planting Both Cucumbers and Peppers.
So, after you have gathered together the tools that you are going to need in order to effectively grow both peppers and cucumbers it is important to then be aware of the various key steps that you really should consider following just to make life that bit easier for you. Now, once again you do not need any specialist gardening knowledge for this to work effectively, but at the same time there does need to be a sense of care with each step that you do.
With that in mind, the important steps to follow have to include the following.
- Be prepared to sow pepper seeds 8 weeks before you will be planting them.
It is important that you sow the seed 8 weeks prior to when you will be planting them out and this also has to include the final frost of the year. This is key because you do not want the plants to have started to grow only to then find that a frost can come and just wipe them out.
- Your cucumber seeds have to be sown 4 weeks before the planting.
When it comes to the cucumber seeds then you should look at sowing them just four weeks before you would then be planting them out. Once again, you have to think about the final frost and how it is then going to affect the cucumber plants because just as with the peppers it is entirely possible that the plants would be hit hard.
- Make sure that you know where you will be planting them.
It is not just a case of knowing the time when you will be sowing the seeds but also where the plants are going to be situated as they grow. Getting their space ready in advance does mean that you can make sure that everything is in place because they are going to need the perfect conditions in order to reach the heights that you are hoping for.
- Make sure that the growing medium is ready.
Making sure that you have the correct soil ready for the plants and them being transplanted is obviously going to be an important step. Both peppers and cucumbers need quite fertile soil but at the same time it also has to be very well draining as they hate their feet being constantly wet. Also, check the pH of the soil as this can also have a negative impact on your plants.
- Prepare a support structure for the cucumber plants.
As cucumber plants normally grow taller than peppers, it is always a good idea to include some kind of support structure in advance so that they can be trained. It is all too easy for these plants to become damaged as they grow without the correct support especially when the fruit starts to develop. By doing this at the beginning, it means you can support the plant from start to finish leading to one that is stronger and healthier.
- Consider hardening them off.
When the seedlings have started to develop, you should consider doing a process that is known as hardening them off. This means starting to expose them to slightly cooler temperatures but in a controlled manner although if the temperature is starting to really fall, then they need to be brought back to the warmth. This just toughens them up and it is seen as being a better way of producing a healthy plant capable of withstanding varying conditions as it matures.
- On the day of planting, put them all outside.
If we can now jump forward just slightly to the point where you are going to be planting them out and we recommend getting them outside for the entire day just to make sure that they are ready. In actual fact, some people keep them in their pots and leave them out overnight if the temperature is not going to be too low just to check that they are going to be able to survive.
- Always plant the cucumber seedlings first.
With the planting, it is recommended that you always plant the cucumber seedlings first and that is primarily due to the difference in the size of the plants as they mature. They do need more space than pepper plants so this has to be something that you keep in mind because if you plant them too close to one another then they will be competing for resources which is hardly going to be beneficial to any plant.
- Put the pepper seedlings in front of the cucumber plants.
As pepper plants are smaller, it does mean that they have to be put in front of the cucumber plants or else you do run the risk of them getting inadequate light as they grow. This is hardly going to lead to you having strong plants that will produce a substantial yield of fruit and it is another reason why you need to plant those cucumbers first.
- Remember to water things.
The final point here is to remember to water the seedlings after you have planted them, but at the same time you should not soak them as this is going to be detrimental to their potential success. Just making the soil moist is going to be sufficient, but of course you also have to make sure that there is adequate drainage or else you are undoubtedly going to run into problems.
3. A Couple of Important Tips to Remember.
Now, there are a number of other tips that are important for you to think about that will make a difference to the way in which both plants are able to grow.
- Remember the distance between the peppers and cucumbers.
The actual distance that is going to be between both the peppers and the cucumbers, remembering that the cucumbers will be staked, is important for both plants to thrive. If you have the space available then you should be looking at a few feet between plants as this provides ample space for both to grow without interfering with one another.
- Alternatives to staking.
There may be occasions where individuals are unable to stake cucumber plants simply because they do not have the space available that will ultimately be required for this. However, there is an alternative and the best thing to do is to look at shorter bush varieties that are available and they can still produce a number of fruits although you might need to have a number of plants.
4. Dealing with Pests & Diseases.
The final section that we are going to look at is dealing with pests and diseases as both plants are going to be rather susceptible to a variety of things that could potentially harm both of them at the same time. However, with the correct help and approach, there is no doubt that you will be able to improve the chances of dealing with the problem before it gets too severe.
- Coping with aphids.
Aphids are a serious pain to deal with and they do love to affect both peppers and cucumbers if they are left to their own devices. In order to deal with this, you should be looking at using a soap solution that can either be sprayed on the plant or wiped on with a cloth. This is not only going to knock them off and stop them attacking the plant, but it is also not going to be toxic to you so there is no need to worry about the fruit.
- Dealing with cucumber mosaic virus.
With this, the name is rather confusing in that it is not only your cucumber plants that are going to be attacked by the cucumber mosaic virus as your pepper plants are also going to be wide open to being infected as well. This virus will stop the plants growing and the leaves are also going to end up turning yellow before they then begin to curl up. If you see the plant being infected, then it has to be removed immediately rather than just trying to cure it.
- Trying to cope with powdery mildew.
Powdery mildew is a real bane of so many different plants and both cucumbers and peppers are also liable to be affected by it. This can be spotted as being a white powdery looking patch that often begins under the leaves. If it is left untreated, then it is going to have a profound impact on the actual harvest that you are able to get from the plants which is hardly going to be a good thing. Also, leaves that are affected will have a tendency to just drop off and this can then remove some of the protection for the fruit.
- There is potential for cucumbers to effectively choke your pepper plants.
Finally, here is the reason why you cannot plant these two different plants immediately side by side and instead leave a gap to allow them to grow. It is entirely possible that your cucumber plants will have the ability to choke your pepper plants and remove a substantial amount of the nutrients that they are going to require in order to mature and survive.
You see, the problem is that they do grow at different rates and that is why you must start off the pepper plants several weeks before your cucumbers so that they both mature at the same time. Also, if you use a cage and a trellis to train your cucumbers then it also reduces the chances of them strangling your pepper plants allowing both to grow in complete harmony with one another.
The aim of our essential guide has been to effectively help you along the way with a number of key points related to being able to effectively grow both peppers and cucumbers together. All that is left for you to do is to go ahead and put things into action as that is the only way that you are going to be able to get anything growing no matter how many tips or guides you end up reading.