Why Won't My Cucumbers Grow?

Updated on July 10, 2011
S.B. asks from Encino, CA
6 answers

Hi Moms -
Here's a question for those of you who have cucumber plants - my vine is beginning to grow, and has flowered several times. Almost all of those flowers start growing small cucumbers. The fruits grow to about two inches, and then the whither and die. Any thoughts on why this is happening? Would love some ideas about how to get my cukes to grow! Thanks!

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answers from Dallas on

How do you water them? Cucumbers don't like to be watered from the top. (Spraying the water and letting it fall.) They like to be watered low, right on top of the soil. They also don't like to be over-watered. Do your leaves have lighter spots, almost like the sun is bleaching them? If so, they are likely being watered too much, and from above. The soil should be moist, but not wet. Have you noticed any brown bugs around, or other bugs? Stink bugs, and other bugs are killing crops all over the place. If you have stink bugs, go to a natural store and see if you can find Diatomaceous Earth. Squirt it on the leaves with a turkey baster. I don't know how hot it is where you are, but here it is too hot for cucumber plants. We have to plant them in March and harvest all the cukes before the hot summer. Place mulch or compost around the plants, to keep them cool.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Norfolk on

I've never been able to figure cucumbers out.
They do the same thing for me every time I try them.
My neighbor grows them and always has a surplus.
What sort of cucumbers did you plant?
Some are pickling types and don't grow very big.
Are the flowers being pollinated (bees insects can get to the flowers)?
Is there too much / not enough water?
Squash bugs, sap suckers, aphids and vine borers can be a problem.
Various molds/mildews/blights can cause problems.
Did you grow a veggie garden last year in this same soil? Maybe it needs some fertilizer.
I'm trying butternut squash this year and I've got some nice small ones developing - but wow - those vines sure climb!



answers from Las Vegas on

I had the same problem with both zucchini and cucumber. I actually had one good season of zucchini, and then haven't been able to grow any since, for the last two seasons they get about two inches long and then die. I think it has something to do with a soil imbalance, either PH, or something like that. You can get your soil tested, and they can tell you what you can do to balance it out. You probably just need some fertilizer, but which one to get is the problem (which is why the testing is good). I can grow tomatoes really well, and I have friends who can't grow them, but can grow squash and cucumbers like crazy. That really makes it seem to me like it is a soil issue. It could be bugs, but I have never seen any bugs on plants like those (and I have serious tomato worms each year), and I have tried multiple watering techniques (more, less, on the ground, etc). Let us know if you get it solved, I have just given up on growing them :(



answers from Los Angeles on

We started growing them this year for the first time this year and have a ton! But I am sure it is by accident. we don't really know what we are doing. The only things I know is that they need lots of room, water everyday, 1/2 sunlight and shade and good soil. we have lots of clay in our soil so we had to but special soil at Lowes that neutralizes the clay so to speak. You can chat with experts on Home depot or lowes website, but they might not know about the conditions in your area so you may need to go into the store.



answers from Los Angeles on

It may be that the flowers are not getting pollinated. We have squash that do that as well. For a while none were growing, and my partner actually hand pollinated some. Good luck and keep those bees around.

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