Growing Cucumbers in Containers-Results of 2016

I trialed 7 different varieties of cucumbers that can be used for pickles last year. It’s still early here and have some free time so I figured that it’s still not too late to go ahead and post my findings. All pots used were 16" and most but not all were cheap self watering type or regular type bought at Home Desperate made by Dynamic Design Newbury. Medium used in the pots were 2 parts of Miracle-Gro potting soil (not moisture control type) mixed with 1 part perlite and 1 part vermiculite. Fertilizer used sparingly was Miracle-gro Shake-n-feed tomato, fruit and veg. with calcium. The number of plants put into each container that I grew from seed were 4 except for the 2 white varieties where 6 were used. 2 plantings of each type in different pots were used and were staggered time wise to prolong the season except for Pick-A-Bushel(only 1)…

Used were:
Pickle Bush (Burpee)
Dragons Egg white (Baker Creek)
Wisconsin SMR 58 (Harts)
Salt & Pepper white (Johnny’s seeds)
Fresh Pickles (Burpee)
Homemade Pickles (NEseed)
Pick-A-Bushel (Burpee)

The top three producers were staring with…
3rd place Homemade Pickles (note:seeds had a low germ rate but you get a lot for the price)
2nd place Pick-A-Bushel (note: these had the longest vines at 6’ and had to be watered the most)
1st place Fresh Pickles

Honorable mention goes to Dragons Egg (They love being in containers and do very well, a really nice tasting cuc. eaten fresh and was the favorite of the next door neighbor’s kids!)

Other notes:
Salt & Pepper: would over ripen and turn yellow very quickly like over night.
Wisc. SMR 58: is NOT for containers!
Pickle Bush: the first planting did ok for quite a while but later they started turning into melons. And the later planting was even worse, they started turning into melons even quicker and had hardly any usable cucs!

I also planted 8 Mexican sour gherkins(Burpee) in a 12" pot and only got about 6 flowers between all of them and nothing produced. I won’t bother trying them again.

Some pics of some but not all of the cucs in the pots.


I didn’t grow in pots but in a greenhouse. My somewhat limited tests had H-19 (aka Little Leaf) as the best cuke hands down. The plants are fairly disease resistant, very productive, and the cukes do not turn bitter later in the season when things get hot. Oh and they don’t require pollinators, so fine in a GH or for prolonged rainy weather. Although they are supposed to be a pickling cuke we found them excellent for fresh eating as well.

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