Have you been avoiding growing cucumbers in your garden because they cause you to burp or have stomach upset? There is a type of cucumber called burpless that people find easier to digest. Most standard cucumbers grow best on a trellis to save space and to discourage curling of the cucumbers. Do burpless cucumbers need a trellis?
In general, burpless cucumbers don’t require a trellis to grow on. However, there are several advantages to growing them vertically rather than letting them sprawl along the ground. Using a trellis takes up much less space, helps prevent disease, allows the cucumbers to grow straight, and makes harvesting easier.
Now that you know that burpless cucumbers are best grown on a trellis, you may have other questions. Let’s dive into how to grow them, the types of trellises, what makes them burpless, and much more!
How Tall Do Burpless Cucumbers Grow?
There are several varieties of burpless cucumbers for you to try. Some spread out on vines 3-5 feet wide, and some grow to just 1-2 feet.
Plant and Fruit Size
The shorter ones are called bush cucumbers because they grow into a compact bush. They’re an excellent choice for small gardens and can be grown in containers.
Burpless cucumbers are longer than standard ones, growing to 8-12 inches long. They have thin skin, so you don’t need to peel them, have few or no seeds, and have a milder taste than other cucumbers.
In the grocery store, you’ll see long, slender English cucumbers wrapped in plastic to keep them from drying out. These are one of the types of burpless cukes.
Varieties to Choose From
Here are some of the varieties available with the plant and fruit size, in alphabetical order:
- Burpless Bush No. 26
- These have a mild flavor. The fruits are 8 inches long and take 55-63 days to maturity. The plant spreads 1-2 feet wide.
- Burpless Tasty Green
- These are a sweet, crunchy, Japanese variety. The fruits are 10-12 inches long and take 55-63 days to maturity. The plant spreads 1-2 feet wide.
- Garden Sweet Burpless
- These are a sweet variety of cucumbers. The fruits are 10-12 inches long and take 55 days to maturity. The plant spreads 3-4 feet wide.
- These are light green and grow on vigorous vines. The fruits are 9 inches long and take 59-65 days to maturity. The plant spreads 1-2 feet wide.
- Summer Dance
- These are a sweet, Japanese variety. The fruits are 9 inches long and take 55 days to maturity. The plant spreads 3-4 feet wide. It’s highly resistant to powdery mildew and can handle heat stress.
- Sweet Success
- These have a sweeter taste than any other burpless cucumber. The fruits are 12 inches long and take 58 days to maturity. The plant spreads 4-5 feet wide. It’s resistant to cucumber viruses.
How to Grow Cucumbers Vertically on a Trellis
Cucumbers need full sun, rich soil, and even moisture to grow healthy. They aren’t frost-tolerant, so plant them outside when the soil temperature is 60-7- degrees Fahrenheit.
For the short, bushy varieties, plant 1 foot apart and 3 feet apart for the taller ones.
There are several shapes and sizes of trellises for supporting your burpless cucumbers. You can build your own or buy them. The trellis needs to be tall enough for the cucumber variety you are planting. It needs to be strong enough to hold the cucumbers as they ripen.
You can plant your burpless cucumbers along a fence or use tomato cages or wooden stakes to support the plants.
If you choose a trellis, it can be a simple, functional trellis or something more decorative for your garden.
If you’re growing your burpless cucumbers in a container, tomato cages or short stakes can be inserted into the pot. The container should be at least 12 inches wide and 8 inches deep.
Types of Trellises
- This shape works well for the smaller bush types of burpless cucumbers.
- Cucumber plants can grow up and over the arch. The number of plants will determine the length needed, and the size of your variety will dictate how tall the arch needs to be.
- This is a basic trellis that is sold for vegetables or climbing flowers. It can be attached to a wall.
- Flat Panel
- This can be made of just about any material and attached to a wall. It can have vertical or criss-cross supports for the vine or have chicken wire or cattle or feedlot panels for the tendrils to hold onto.
- Teepee Shape
- This consists of poles tied together at the top like a teepee. Each one can support one burpless cucumber plant.
These can be made from wood, metal pipe, or copper pipe. The vines can hold onto these or to chicken wire or cattle panels attached to the frame.
Care and Harvest
Tie the vines loosely to their support with twine or string until the tendrils grab hold and support the plant.
Water your burpless cucumber plants regularly and fertilize them when they start to flower.
Once the cucumbers are nearing their mature length, check every couple of days if there are any to pick. Pick them when they are green and firm. Please put them in the refrigerator as soon as possible.
Cut the stem with a knife or scissors to avoid damage to the plant.
Why are Burpless Cucumbers Called Burpless?
Some people experience bloating, reflux or burping when eating cucumbers.
Cucurbitacin is the chemical that’s responsible for cucumbers’ bitter taste and is found in the skin and stem. It’s also found in squashes, pumpkins, and melons.
It’s believed that cucurbitacins cause burping.
Burpee Seed Company states, “Burpless cucumbers, both American and Asian types, contain low or no cucurbitacin, the compound that causes bitterness and increases one’s susceptibility to ‘burping’ after eating the fruits.”
Asian types of burpless cucumbers have less cucurbitacin than American types. There is evidence that the Asian burpless cucumbers may cause less burping.
People love burpless cucumbers not only because they cause less burping but due to their lack of bitterness and thin skins. Some varieties are even described as being sweet.
This type of cucumber is excellent to grow in your home garden. It comes in short bushy varieties and ones that produce long vines. Either type is easier to grow when giving them a trellis to support them.
Since these cucumbers are longer than standard ones, using a trellis gives the fruit plenty of space to grow long and straight. It also makes it easier to find and reach the cucumbers for harvesting.
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