My little plants really surprised me. They took off with little to no fussing in my sqft garden. Within a week of flowers, I have a few cucumbers that are already about 7-8" long. They are American Long cucumbers if that helps. When do you know when they are ready to be harvested?
I'm a first-time gardener, who had LOTS of cucumbers this year, since I 'way overplanted in my innocence. I looked for smooth, glossy cukes that appeared to be completely "filled out" and plump. If they turn too yellow, I think they are over-ripe.
But this is just my humble opinion, since I am so new at this.
You have throughly confused me. I know about 600 + cultivars of cucumber but I never heard of an American Long. Nor can google find a reference. At any rate except to save seeds, a ripe cucumber is useless. It is a vegetable that is only used in in its immature stage.
I agree the smaller they are the better...this is my second year with cucumbers...last year I waited until they were huge...and they were bitter sometimes and didn't taste as good. This year I started picking when they were smaller and they taste much better...
I picked my first 2 cukes yesterday and shared with my neighbors. Boy let me tell you they were awesome! One was 18" and the other was about 15". I was afraid that the insides were going to be gross or have hard seeds, but neither was the case. They were so tender. I'm shocked that they grew so fast and in such a small place (they are in my sqft garden remember). Thanks for your help!
For anyone who enjoys canning some of their surplus garden goodies, if you have overripe yellow cukes, there is a recipe for yellow cucumber relish that is wonderful (my kids used to love it on their hot dogs when they were young). I have it in an old copy of a canning book often used by farm wives back when they didn't like to waste anything.