Some gardeners are still confused in the varieties and hybrids of cucumbers. To choose the best varieties for certain conditions, you need to know about their features. So, cucumbers differ in size and shape of fruits, taste and color, height of the bush and the presence of side shoots, yield and resistance to disease or lower temperatures. All this is very important, but to begin the choice of a suitable variety of cucumbers is necessary with the type of pollination.
Parthenocarpic and bee-pollinated: who is who
As you know, to get a flower from a flower, it must be pollinated. For this, the pollen from the male flower is transferred to the female. Only female pollinated inflorescences turn into cucumbers. Insects are most often pollinated (bees, bumblebees, and even flies); besides, the wind, rain, or humans can help in the transfer of pollen.
Varieties and hybrids of cucumbers that require pollination to form the ovary are called bee-pollinating (it doesn’t matter who will actually engage in pollination — bee, wind, or human). Bee-pollinated cucumbers should be planted there where insects can get - in open areas or in large, ventilated greenhouses.
Without proper pollination, female flowers become empty flowers, and an excess of male inflorescences “draws out” nutrients and moisture from the entire bush.
Important! The owner of the garden should monitor the balance of male and female flowers (their ideal ratio is 1:10), as well as the activity of bees.
Parthenocarpic cucumbers are often confused with self-pollinated, but this is wrong. In fact, parthenocarpic varieties do not need pollination at all. These hybrids were selected specifically for closed greenhouses and areas that the bees do not fly to. All the flowers on the parthenocarpic bush are female, there are no male inflorescences at all. A female flower is considered to be originally pollinated (fertilized), it can produce a cucumber itself.
Such a structure of parthenocarpic varieties reduces plant care, a gardener does not have to monitor the balance of male and female inflorescences, attract bees to the site and worry about too overcast weather, in which bees do not fly.
All parthenocarpic cucumbers are hybrids, moreover, the fruits of these varieties do not contain seeds, there are simply no seeds inside the cucumber. Therefore, in order to plant the same variety for the next year, you will have to re-acquire the seeds, they cannot be harvested by your own hands from your own harvest (which is quite possible for pseudo-pollinated cucumbers).
Who is behind bee pollinated varieties
It would seem that if everything is so good with parthenocarpic hybrids, why are bee-pollinated cucumbers needed at all, who continue to deal with their selection and cultivation. But there are some nuances - these varieties have unique properties that are not inherent in non-pollinated hybrids. Among them:
- Unique taste. Practically any bee-pollinating variety is tasty both fresh, and in salted, pickled, fermented. This is an excellent quality for home cultivation, when the owner will use the same cucumbers for different needs.
- High yield. With enough pollination and proper care, bee-pollinated hybrid varieties give the highest yields.
- Environmental friendliness. Checking the level of environmental friendliness of a variety will help the same bees - the insect will not pollinate bushes treated with dangerous pesticides.
- The presence of seeds. First, the seeds are free seed for the following seasons. And, secondly, (most importantly), it is in the seeds that the most useful vitamins and trace elements that cucumbers are rich in are contained.
- Bee pollinated varieties - the best material for breeding. It is from these cucumbers that the best hybrids appeared.
To date, there are a lot of bee-pollinated cucumbers, their demand has almost not decreased after the appearance of parthenocarpic species.
“Actor” is a bee-pollinating hybrid that embodies the best qualities of this species. This cucumber has a high yield, which allows you to collect up to 12 kg per square meter.
The fruits of this variety are pimply, with large tubercles, they have excellent taste characteristics and absolutely no bitterness (cucumbers are equally appetizing both in salad and in a jar). The size of the cucumber is medium (up to 100 grams), the fruits are spiced quickly - on the 40th day after planting.
Green branchy bushes are resistant to diseases, they can grow both in open and in closed ground.
Hybrid "Hermes F1" early. This is one of the most productive varieties - more than 5 kg of cucumbers are harvested from one meter. Small cucumbers have a regular cylindrical shape with small pimples. The taste of cucumbers juicy and crispy, suitable for universal use.
There are no voids, yellow spots inside the fruit, all cucumbers are even - the variety is excellent for marketing. The cucumbers themselves are short - only 7-9 cm, they must be collected every day, otherwise the fruits will outgrow and deform. Bushes sredneroslye with green leaves. Hybrid Hermes F1 is planted only in the ground, this cucumber is not suitable for closed greenhouses.Important! Male flowers not only do not bring "offspring", their excess can harm the whip, sucking all the nutrients. Therefore, extra flowers with stamens must be torn off.
Parthenocarpic cucumber features
Partenocarpic varieties are an easier way to get about the same yield. Bushes have only female inflorescences, they do not need bees, hybrids are characterized by increased resistance to diseases and temperature leaps. Why love parthenocarpic cucumbers:
- Lightweight care.
- Universality - it is possible to plant cucumbers in the ground, in a closed greenhouse, and on a balcony.
- Less "capriciousness" of varieties in relation to the shadow. Partenocarpic cucumbers can not thin out too much, they are less susceptible to disease and rot due to poor ventilation and low light.
- No need for bees.
- No need to plant the seeds of male plants. All seeds are only female, they are quite self-sufficient.
- Equal to bee-pollinating varieties, there are many hybrids yielding up to 20-21 kg per square meter.
- Good taste and no bitterness. Selection allows you to eliminate the substance that gives cucumbers a bitter taste. Partenocarpic varieties can be eaten fresh and canned.
The versatility of parthenocarpic varieties puts them on a par with bee-pollinated. Being engaged in cultivation of this culture, you should not forget that unsprayed cucumbers do not have seeds. The owner will not be able to independently display new varieties and save on seeds.
Mid-ripe parthenocarpic cucumber "Abbad" does not need bees, the plant does not need pollination. The yield of the variety is at a height of up to 11.5 kgm², and the taste characteristics of the fruits do not practically differ from the bee-pollinated cucumbers, however, this hybrid is more suitable for salads than for pickling.
Cucumbers are long (up to 16 cm) and smooth, bright green and cylindrical in shape. When the soil warms up, they can be planted both in closed and in open ground. They are planted from March to July, and cleaned until October.
Evidence that parthenocarpic varieties are not inferior to bee-pollinating can be a hybrid “Augustin”. This is an early ripe cucumber, ripening at 36-38 days.
Cucumbers are quite large - up to 16 cm and 110 g, and are suitable for preservation and fresh consumption. The lumpy fruits have absolutely no bitterness. Varieties are not afraid of disease, even such as downy mildew. A high yield allows you to remove 265-440 centners of cucumber per hectare of land. Planting a hybrid cucumber is allowed in both open and closed ground.
Which grade is better
It is impossible to say unequivocally which varieties of cucumbers are better; each owner must take into account the peculiarities of his plot, the greenhouse, pay attention to the soil. But the main criterion, of course, are the bees.
If cucumbers are supposed to be planted in open ground and there are hives nearby, then it is better to prefer the bee-pollinated variety. Parthenocarpic cucumbers are more suitable for the greenhouse.