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Cucumber Temperature Question

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Post  countrynaturals 11/9/2016, 10:56 pm

I assumed all of my plants would make it until the first frost, but my cukes are all dead, including the bush variety I started on the deck to bring inside for the winter. Our night temps have never gone below 42. Is that cold enough to kill a cucumber plant?
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Post  sanderson 11/10/2016, 4:10 am

I took mine out about a month ago. I get tired of looking at fading plants and want to get going on the winter crops or else amend and put the bed away.

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Post  CapeCoddess 11/10/2016, 1:00 pm

Not sure about the temps but we know they love heat. I've noticed that cuke plants will only go on so long so it's a good idea to succession plant. I think last year I had them going right up to first frost.
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Post  countrynaturals 11/10/2016, 6:32 pm

CapeCoddess wrote:Not sure about the temps but we know they love heat.   I've noticed that cuke plants will only go on so long so it's a good idea to succession plant.  I think last year I had them going right up to first frost.
CC
Thanks, CC. Another lesson learned the hard way. Rolling Eyes
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Post  BeetlesPerSqFt 11/10/2016, 7:26 pm

countrynaturals wrote:I assumed all of my plants would make it until the first frost, but my cukes are all dead, including the bush variety I started on the deck to bring inside for the winter. Our night temps have never gone below 42. Is that cold enough to kill a cucumber plant?
I found one site that said that chilling injuries could occur to the cucumber fruits with prolonged exposure to temperatures below 55*F (~13*C.) (Hmm, this may explain why the cucumbers I'd left on the kitchen table were lasting longer than the ones I put in the fridge...)  Another site gave the same temperature for chilling damage but didn't specify fruit. Even without chilling damage per se, cold is stressful on cuke plants and stress plants more susceptible to disease. My cucumbers seemed to give up early this year, too ... but they did better than last year and I have too many pickles, so I can't really complain. So if you want to bring cucumbers inside, it sounds like 55 is the number to watch - I don't know what "prolonged" means (it wasn't defined) but I'd guess it means more than an hour or two during the overnight.

Slightly off-topic, but I'm also reading that winter squash fruits, particularly butternut, can sustain chilling damage below 50*F, which I did not know (I'd assumed only frost/freezing temperatures were problematic.) It sounds like the damage isn't always readily apparent, but can prevent successful long term storage. So I guess if I successfully grow butternuts again, I'll want to harvest quite a bit sooner than I did this year.
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Post  countrynaturals 11/10/2016, 11:25 pm

Thanks, Beetles. I was going to try 50 as my low, but now I'll up it to 55. Tomorrow I'll start converting the butterfly house to a greenhouse for the winter. I will set the heat for 55 at night. I need to get the plastic up and start bringing in the plants and positioning the lights. I still have more seeds to plant inside, too. So far I've failed for 3 straight seasons. I must redeem myself with this winter garden.  geek
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Post  Mimi2 11/12/2016, 10:01 am

Not sure about the temperature cut off, but I've noticed that my cukes don't like any kind of chill. They do seem to be fairly sensitive regardless of the variety. So worth it though- as the home grown ones are so flavourful- and the whole family loves them Smile
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Post  countrynaturals 11/12/2016, 11:29 am

Mimi2 wrote:Not sure about the temperature cut off, but I've noticed that my cukes don't like any kind of chill. They do seem to be fairly sensitive regardless of the variety. So worth it though- as the home grown ones are so flavourful- and the whole family loves them Smile
I had no idea they were that fussy, so now I'm back to store-bought, since even the new ones I planted to bring in for the winter are gone. Re-planting today. Sad
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Post  plantoid 11/12/2016, 3:20 pm

countrynaturals wrote:I assumed all of my plants would make it until the first frost, but my cukes are all dead, including the bush variety I started on the deck to bring inside for the winter. Our night temps have never gone below 42. Is that cold enough to kill a cucumber plant?
  Much below 45 oF will see off a lot of tender plants if the cold is sustained for much more than 5 hours especially at night .


Over the years I've found that at night around 2am to 5am  the temps often take a sudden dip a few degrees colder than forecast especially if the sky is clear as a bell as there is no heat insulation effect available from clouds .

 Of all our veg the cuc's & smaller courgettes are the most sensitive to cold ,  then it's the toms turn .

Those nearest the coldest part of the glasshouse or plastic tunnel ( glass & outsides) & on the floor will suffer first , Those on the floor get hit the hardest as cold air trickles down in the air between the glass / plastic sheeting   & the plants .  This can be thre or more degree cooler than the middle of the greenhouse .
 Sometimes you'll find only one side of the plants damaged due to this effect .

 Last year I  chucked lengths of garden fleece over a lot of tth unripe toms both inside & outside crops .
 I managed to protect the rhubarb and marrows for a few weeks longer as well despite them getting a touch of air frost .
 
Then a sharp heavy ground frost arrived and zapped everything outside that was temperature sensitive .

 For me this year has been fantastic , just a few glasshouse toms remained unripe and got too chilled .
I took the last plants out this afternoon ( about five pounds of semi & unripe toms harvested ) .  That's unheard of this late in the year . Normally you're stuffed if you haven't harvested those in the glasshouse by mid October

 I've put lettuce plants in tubs high up on the wheeled trolleys in the glasshouse  .to see if we can be eating our own Christmas day lettuce this year .. We will be sowing a teaspoon of green house tub radish & salad onions as well .

 Like last year , I'll be using my home made 2 " dia 8 inch tall candles as a heat source over the winter as soon as we get a decent over night frost of minus three degrees centigrade  for three hours  or longer .
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Post  countrynaturals 11/12/2016, 7:49 pm

plantoid wrote:


 Like last year , I'll be using my home made 2 " dia 8 inch tall candles as a heat source over the winter as soon as we get a decent over night frost of minus three degrees centigrade  for three hours  or longer .
We got a nice radiant heater donated to the sanctuary. It has a thermostat, so I can keep it down to 50-55. That will be my heat source on really cold nights. Until then, my grow lamps will double as mini-heaters.
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Post  newbeone 11/16/2016, 1:18 pm

This Year I have been researching temperatures for different vegetables because all of the planting charts I have found do not work for me as I have a small back yard 27' X 45' and it is fenced all around with a 6' fence makes for a very hot micro climate. But anyway for Your question according to the charts the temperature for cucumbers is 65 to 95. You can find one of the charts at fedcoseeds.com Hope I didn't pull a bobo by referring to this website but I hope it helps.
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Post  has55 11/16/2016, 7:59 pm

countrynaturals wrote:
plantoid wrote:


 Like last year , I'll be using my home made 2 " dia 8 inch tall candles as a heat source over the winter as soon as we get a decent over night frost of minus three degrees centigrade  for three hours  or longer .
We got a nice radiant heater donated to the sanctuary. It has a thermostat, so I can keep it down to 50-55. That will be my heat source on really cold nights. Until then, my grow lamps will double as mini-heaters.
how expensive is a radiant heater to use?
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Post  countrynaturals 11/16/2016, 11:07 pm

has55 wrote:
countrynaturals wrote:
plantoid wrote:


 Like last year , I'll be using my home made 2 " dia 8 inch tall candles as a heat source over the winter as soon as we get a decent over night frost of minus three degrees centigrade  for three hours  or longer .
We got a nice radiant heater donated to the sanctuary. It has a thermostat, so I can keep it down to 50-55. That will be my heat source on really cold nights. Until then, my grow lamps will double as mini-heaters.
how expensive is a radiant heater to use?
I don't know yet -- we just bought it (the donated one didn't work). I do know that we never noticed the grow lights last year on our electric bill, and the heater is supposed to be energy efficient. I'm not a good judge, however. Our electric bill sometimes hits $500 in the summer, so winters are a huge relief. We have a wood stove, so we hardly use the central heat. I doubt if we'll even notice the difference with the greenhouse heater, but if we do, I will definitely post the damages. One thing that makes them cheaper to use is that they don't have fans. What bothered me however, is that it said not use them in damp areas -- like bathrooms -- so we do have to be very careful. I tried to find a real greenhouse heater, but they were all too big. My greenhouse is only 6x6. This was the best option, but it isn't what these are supposed to be used for, so I can't recommend this option to anyone else.
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Post  sanderson 11/17/2016, 3:07 am

Newbeone,  It is okay to let folks know where you found an item.  That's just being helpful.

You made me curious so I went outside and measured the usable backyard.  It is 60' wide x 15' with a 6' fence.  During the summer (90-110*F) I use Home Depot  Wink  75% sun shade over all of the beds.  I have frames over each bed.  The hot brick patio and a cluster of beds are covered with a 7' tall, 12' wide, 16' long sun shade set up.  During the winter night freezes, I have medium Christmas lights on timers under 4 mil plastic covers.  A bedroom lamp with 75 watt incandescent bulb plus Christmas lights kept the 4x4x6' green house above freezing.

Sometimes, the temperatures can be right for a plant but the sunlight hours are too short.

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Post  countrynaturals 11/17/2016, 11:33 am

sanderson wrote:
Sometimes, the temperatures can be right for a plant but the sunlight hours are too short.
That's why I have the grow lights on one timer and the heater on another. It's a real challenge. Summers here are consistent -- winters not so much. 40 degree temp swings are common in a 24 hour period and 20 degree shifts from day to day are just as common. Bright sun one day and now pouring rain the next. AARRGGHH!!!!! I hope we can get this system regulated, soon, before everything croaks and it doesn't matter anymore. Sad
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Post  has55 11/17/2016, 1:30 pm

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