Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Cucumber
Cucumis sativus 'Lemon'

Family: Cucurbitaceae (koo-ker-bih-TAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Cucumis (KOO-koo-mis) (Info)
Species: sativus (sa-TEE-vus) (Info)
Cultivar: Lemon
Additional cultivar information: (aka True Lemon)

» View all varieties of Cucumbers

7 vendors have this plant for sale.

44 members have or want this plant for trade.

Vines and Climbers

6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)

18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

Seed Type:
Open Pollinated

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun

Bloom Color:
Bright Yellow

Bloom Time:
Mid Summer
Late Summer/Early Fall

Other details:
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Soil pH requirements:
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Propagation Methods:
From seed; direct sow after last frost

Seed Collecting:
Allow unblemished fruit to ripen; clean and dry seeds

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There are a total of 11 photos.
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18 positives
No neutrals
1 negative

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive ErockRPh On Jan 23, 2014, ErockRPh from Glocester, RI (Zone 6a) wrote:

These cukes are tasty, but they are a bit seedy to be eaten out of hand. They are great for stuffing with something like a cold quinoa or couscous salad and make for a very interesting presentation.

They grow quite well in my area, and they don't tend to sprawl to the same extent as other cuke varieties. Lemon cukes are about equally as susceptible to powdery mildew and spotted cucumber beetles as other varieties, in my experience.

Positive spaghetina On Apr 10, 2011, spaghetina from San Carlos, CA wrote:

You really don't get cuter cucumbers than these lemon cukes. I grew many of these in the summer of 2010 and although I was prevented from reaching them for harvest after my Sungolds basically fell over blocking my path, they continued to crank out cukes, even with very old, very yellow cukes on the vine.

I enjoyed looking at them more than eating them, sadly. The interior flesh to seed ratio is lower than what I'd prefer - I'd say out of a fruit picked at 2" total diameter, about an 1" in diameter is seeds. Even still, the taste is lovely and mild, and very slightly sweet, and I'll continue growing at least a couple of these as something sort of unique and cute.

Positive sketchkat06 On Aug 30, 2010, sketchkat06 from Lawndale, CA (Zone 10a) wrote:

The fruit of this baby is so cute and odd. If you don't plan on peeling it you'll need to remove the little spikes on it, I used my thumbnail to scrape them off. The flavor is very nice, smooth and just a bit sweet. I harvested mine when it had just started turning yellow to keep the plants producing.

The first two plants I grew in a large strawberry pot in the top center opening, with chard in the lower pockets. I recommend giving it a dedicated container as these two plants only produced one short vine and just 3 fruits each before they called it quits. The roots definitely don't like sharing resources. I now have a plant in its own private container, a weird shaped one with about...1 cubic foot of soil I'd say and even though it's a small space it's doing much better than the shared ones did. Already has 3 or 4 vines going and very vigorous, several flower buds developing :)

Positive southernwv On Aug 20, 2010, southernwv from Cabin Creek, WV wrote:

This is a very good cuke if you like to grow odd things. Althought I don't notice a big difference in taste versus the normal tube shaped cikes. I just grow them because its something different.

Positive Caedi25 On Mar 5, 2010, Caedi25 from Kirkland, WA (Zone 8b) wrote:

We were browsing the veggie starts in a nursery last year and an enthusiastic gentleman edged over to suggest we try the Lemon Cucc. We did, they flourished, and we now have a new favorite cucc. So prolific that we eat them like apples during their growing season. This year we're starting from seed and have found the seedlings to be as healthy and exuberant as last year's store-bought baby plants. A keeper!

Positive csgarden On Aug 5, 2009, csgarden from Roanoke, VA wrote:

I love the lemon cucumbers! Nice, mild flavor, prolific, and they're cute. Get lots of attention when extras are taken to work.

Negative WillowWasp On Jul 5, 2009, WillowWasp from Jones Creek, TX (Zone 9a) wrote:

My first time to plant and harvest this Cucumber and I don't think I will plant it again. I guess I waited to long to harvest as the cukes were bitter. I did get some that were smaller and they were somewhat bitter so I am gonna pass next season and stick with the ole tried and true Burpless.

It grew successfully I just don't like it. Wonderful vine and lots of cukes on the vine.

Positive dalmatian_fan87 On Jan 15, 2009, dalmatian_fan87 from Cascade, VA (Zone 7a) wrote:

A great cucmber to grow. To me the taste puts the green grocery store cukes to shame. I too like to pick them, wash them, and then just bite right into them, LOL!

Positive CurtisJones On Oct 14, 2008, CurtisJones from Longmont, CO wrote:

From your friends at Botanical Interests: These unique lemon yellow fruits are sweet and crisp with mild flavor that’s easy to digest. They look like lemons, but have white flesh and great cucumber taste. The 3.5” x 2.5” fruits are great for slicing and eating fresh or pickling. Lemon Cucumbers are hard to find in the grocery store, so this is a great one to try in your garden. The plants are somewhat drought tolerant, and the fruit stores well in the refrigerator.

Positive lilybob On Oct 13, 2008, lilybob from Longmont, CO wrote:

Amen to all the positive comments. We just harvested our last good ones a week ago. Also makes a good cucumber soup and you can make neat little faces from the older ones if you let them dry. Lilybob in Colorado

Positive David_Paul On Aug 25, 2007, David_Paul from Clinton, CT (Zone 6b) wrote:

Lemon cukes started off slower than all my squash but once they grabbed they were prolific. Nice tasting. They love to climb so you can grow a lot in a small space. Photo I posted is of two plants in a 15 gallon grow bag--footprint was less about 2 feet square. Note the powdery mildew forming on the lower leaves. Because I did not take care of it, those plants were gone within two weeks of taking this picture (but I did have a harvest which lasted 6 weeks).

Positive nwl On Jul 29, 2007, nwl from Oxford, ME (Zone 5a) wrote:

This cultivar grows best of all the cucumbers that we have ever trialed. Rampant vines bears loads of white > yellow cucumbers. This cultivar requires a lot of water. Makes great relish.

Positive LarryDavid On Aug 16, 2005, LarryDavid from Salt Lake City, UT (Zone 5b) wrote:

One of my favorite cucumbers! We love the taste and prefer to eat them just like an apple. Great heirloom cucumber!

Positive Kachinagirl On Aug 6, 2004, Kachinagirl from Modesto, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:

Dittos to all the above comments. These are my favorite cukes, I don't even eat others. I grow mine vertically in a long narrow raised planter up against the fence which makes it easier to see and pick them. I have attached a sturdy wire mesh (heavy wire with a grid large enough to reach your hands through) to the posts, top and bottom headers of the fence...super simple, easy to clean off dead vines at the end of the season, just yank!. They happily move right up the trellis without any help from me except for a little guiding when first planted. This also leaves more gardening space for other things.

Positive Oregonics On Aug 5, 2004, Oregonics from Tygh Valley, OR (Zone 6a) wrote:

Nothing but good things to say about these Lemon cucumbers. As others have already mentioned, good producer, sweeter, crunchier and would make great pickles!
I'll definately be growing them again.

Positive suncatcheracres On Jul 26, 2004, suncatcheracres from Old Town, FL wrote:

I first grew lemon cukes in a large garden in Oregon in the 1970's, and they remain one of my favorite cukes to this day. I've had great success with them in large black plastic decorative pots, in a sunny spot with an Eastern morning exposure. They are very prolific and need lots of water, especially in a pot.

I agree that the flavor is best if they are picked when small and just turning yellow. They are really delicious in salads, or sliced and served with yougut, sour cream, or extra vigrin olive oil and sprinkled with Spike seasoning. Their round slices are also pretty on a platter with sliced tomatoes and sliced green peppers. They can be very crisp, but the flavor is mild for a cuke, especially if picked when they are small, and I like them because they are rather "burp less." If you don't have a large family, be prepared to give lots of them away.

Positive rjseeney On Jul 25, 2004, rjseeney from Ft Mitchell, KY (Zone 6a) wrote:

Very productive, interesting cuke!!! Lots of cukes, produced over long period. Nice taste, sweeter and crisper than typical cukes. Would make great pickles.

Positive melody On Apr 16, 2004, melody from Benton, KY (Zone 7a) wrote:

Very productive and tasty. This very old variety makes lovely pickles and it tastes great eaten fresh also.

Positive Terry On Jan 16, 2004, Terry from Murfreesboro, TN (Zone 7a) wrote:

An heirloom variety dating back to the late 1800s, it produces tennis-ball size (and shape) green to yellow fruit. Can be harvested before fully ripening (and for the crispest flesh, it's recommended to pick them when they're still fairly small and just starting to turn yellow.) Pretty in salads, especially when matched with darker green-skinned varieties.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Chino Valley, Arizona
Sonoita, Arizona
Laguna Beach, California
Lawndale, California
Long Beach, California
Lucerne Valley, California
Modesto, California
Mountain View, California
Mountain View Acres, California
Richmond, California
San Carlos, California
Ukiah, California
Yosemite Lakes, California
Longmont, Colorado (2 reports)
Clinton, Connecticut
Keystone Heights, Florida
Nalcrest, Florida
Old Town, Florida
Saint Cloud, Florida
Jesup, Georgia
Athens, Illinois
Anderson, Indiana
Benton, Kentucky
Ewing, Kentucky
Ft Mitchell, Kentucky
Oxford, Maine
Port Norris, New Jersey
Farmington, New Mexico
Honeoye, New York
New York City, New York
Star, North Carolina
Hugo, Oklahoma
Medford, Oregon
Rogue River, Oregon
Tygh Valley, Oregon
Coaldale, Pennsylvania
Delaware Water Gap, Pennsylvania
North Augusta, South Carolina
Elgin, Texas
Freeport, Texas
Houston, Texas
Salt Lake City, Utah
Tooele, Utah
Alexandria, Virginia
Cascade, Virginia
Roanoke, Virginia
Dayton, Washington
Kent, Washington
Kirkland, Washington
Cabin Creek, West Virginia
Morgantown, West Virginia

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