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Gardening in Washington State

Growing Cucumbers

Be sure to select a variety that matures within the growing season of your geographic area. Most cucumbers require 50 to 70 days from planting to first harvest.

Purchase seed from catalogs and garden centers. It is not recommended to plant cucumber seed that have been saved from the previous year, as they are unlikely to produce the same variety.


When sowing seeds outdoors, germination is best when the soil temperature is at least 55 °F. Seeds can be planted in mid- to late-May, 4 to 5 seeds per hill (mounds of soil) at a depth of 1-inch. Space the hills 4 to 5 feet apart.

When the plants develop two to three leaves, thin the plants to three well-spaced plants per hill. Cucumbers grow best when temperatures are between 70 and 95 °F. Cucumbers are frost-tender vegetables, meaning frost will kill the plants.

For more information on this topic, see for a free, downloadable PDF.

Submitted by: Sheila L. Gray, May 22, 2015


5 comments on “Growing Cucumbers”

  1. Mike Wells said on September 7, 2017:

    I had to put galavanized 1/4″ screen under the planting bed for mole protection. would this affect the plants.

  2. S Gray said on September 7, 2017:

    Hello Mike,

    I don’t think that this will affect your plants, the roots should grow through the screening. My mom used to screen out moles when I was a kid and it worked fine.

    • Tamas Bakacs said on August 25, 2022:

      Can I
      Cucumbers now sense we are probably having a late summer ? Even if there not totally ready I can still pickle them correct ?

  3. Parul said on June 6, 2022:

    This year is exceptionally raining even in early June. Can I still sow cucumber seeds in my grow bags outside?

  4. Victoria Soileau said on July 8, 2022:

    2022 seems to be horrible for starting cucumbers. My indoor starts died after hardening off and transplanting outdoors. My direct plantings (tried twice) both failed as well, with multiple varieties and new seeds.mis it our unusually cold spring and start of summer?

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