Cucumber ‘Mini Munch’

Family: Cucurbitaceae

Cucumber ‘Mini Munch’ is an F1 hybrid.  This all-female cucumber produces petit-sized cucumbers that will grow up to a maximum of half the size of a standard cucumber when the fruit are fully grown and developed.

This is a fantastic, smooth-skinned cucumber with lovely thin skins and no spines whatsoever.  ‘Mini Munch’ cucumbers taste delicious at every stage – from when they’re the size of the tiniest sized pickled gherkin.  ‘Mini Munch’ cucumbers can be harvested when they are any size – right from the smallest cucumber you’ve ever seen – up to their maximum size.  To help you gauge the size of this variety, here’s a picture of a maximum sized ‘Mini Munch’ cucumber I grew last year….

Here’s a fully developed ‘Mini Munch’ cucumber – it’s about half to three quarters of the size of a standard supermarket cucumber when fully grown. You can eat ‘Mini Munch’ cucumbers before they reach their maximum size.

‘Mini Munch’ cucumbers taste fresh and crisp; they hold a flavour that’s just as you’d hope to find in a cucumber with the faintest hint of ‘honeydew’ melon.

Cucumbers are tender plants that are killed by frosts, so it’s important to protect both your seedlings and plants from low temperatures at all times.  ‘Mini Munch’ cucumbers can be started off early and grown from seed in peat-free compost inside a greenhouse, polytunnel, conservatory, or on a bright and sunny window sill.  Alternatively, when all risk of frost has passed, ‘Mini Munch’ cucumbers can be grown from seed sown directly in the ground where you want your plants to grow or seeds can be sown in containers of peat-free compost outdoors.  In the UK, we usually sow cucumber seeds from March through until June.  Seeds need to be started in a warm place with a minimum temperature of 18C (65F) to facilitate germination – temperatures of around 21C (70F) usually work well.  Cucumber plants need to be grown in a frost-free environment, where temperatures won’t fall below a minimum temperature of 10C (50F) at night.

In the UK, the risk of a late frost passes us by at different times; depending on our location this can be anywhere from the middle of May, up until as late as the middle of June.  If you want to grow your cucumbers outdoors, ‘Mini Munch’ cucumber plants must be hardened off (move your plants outside in the morning and bring your plants indoors at night, every day for a minimum of two weeks) before moving your plants to their permanent destination outdoors when all risk of frost has passed.

‘Mini Munch’ cucumbers don’t have to be grown outdoors, if you prefer you can grown ‘Mini Munch’ cucumbers inside a glasshouse, polytunnel, conservatory, or inside a cold-frame.  Wherever you choose to grow ‘Mini Munch’ cucumbers, remember that these plants require a bright and sunny location that’s sheltered from the wind.  ‘Mini Munch’ cucumbers can be grown in pots and planters filled with peat-free compost or planted directly in the soil.

Cucumbers are naturally trailing or climbing plants that can be grown up a support frame or trellis; training plants vertically takes up the least amount of floor space and is by far the best option to maximise space in small gardens.  Cucumber plants need to be gently tied in to their support network.  Training cucumbers plants upwards helps to protect the fruits from slugs and snails, and prevents your cucumber plants from becoming trip hazards!  However if you prefer, plants can be simply left and allowed to trail along the ground.

Pinch out the growing tip of your ‘Mini Munch’ cucumber plant once the plant has reached the top of your greenhouse or support frame.  Prune back side shoots by counting to two leaves after any developing cucumbers and removing the remainder of the shoots.

If you’re growing ‘Mini Munch’ cucumbers, check your cucumber plants over regularly and keep your eye on any cucumbers in production to avoid missing any fruits that might be concealed by leaves or hidden by neighbouring plants.  I’d advise harvesting cucumbers before they attain their absolute maximum size and remove cucumbers long before they even consider turning yellow and becoming over-ripe.

‘Mini Munch’ is an incredibly productive cucumber that I am very happy to recommend!

Cucumbers can be grown in peat-free compost in containers, or grown directly in the soil.  If you’re growing cucumbers in containers, avoid constricting your plant with too small a planter.  Don’t forget to protect your cucumber seedlings from slugs and snails!

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