tion occurs at 95°F, so delay planting until ater the date othe last spring rost. Seedlings are very sensitive to chillinginjury and will be stunted and leaves will become brittle andturn white under cold growing conditions.
Shallow mechanical cultivation and hand hoeing areneeded to control weeds beore plants have vined. Pruningroots and vines with cultivating equipment slows cucumberdevelopment and reduces yield. Cucumber roots otenspread horizontally aster than the vines and many roots arevery shallow. A limited number o pre-emergence herbicidesare available that will control germinating broadlea weedsand grasses in seeded and transplanted cucumbers i usedproperly. Chemicals are economical when used in narrowband applications over the planted row. Other chemicalscan be used as a layby application between the rows beorevines begin to run. Consult the most recent revision o OSUExtension Fact No. 6008
Weed Control in Vegetables
or thelatest edition o OSU Extension Circular E-832 OSU
Exten- sion Agent’s Handbook o Insect, Plant Disease, and Weed Control
.As runners are being ormed, cultivate each row in thedirection that vines are to be trained. Always cultivating inthe same direction keeps the vines in the row, produces anarrow row, and reduces vine injury when workers harvestthe crop.
Field Scouting for Plant and Pest Devel-opment
Fields should be scouted at minimum once per weekater planting by walking across the entire feld in a V-shape orX-shape pattern and recording plant development, and weedand insect occurrence and numbers. Results o surveys willbe needed to make decisions regarding projection o harvestdate, need to bring in honeybees or pollination, and pestcontrol inputs.I known, scout or diseases in areas o a feld in whichdiseases tend to appear frst. Otherwise, use the V-shapeor X-shape sampling pattern outlined or insects. Some oliardiseases will appear where air circulation is reduced andleaves remain wet, such as in low areas and along borderssheltered by trees. Foliar diseases typically appear frst oncrown leaves close to the base o the main stem. Shadedcrown leaves oten senesce and could be mistaken or disease.Root diseases tend to appear where soil remains wettest,such as in low areas and in heavier soils.
Fields previously in sod or having heavy inestations oweeds in the prior year should be treated with a soil-appliedinsecticide at planting to control soil insect pests includingcutworms. Small seedlings are extremely susceptible to eed-ing damage rom adult striped and spotted cucumber beetlesand may need to be treated with a oliar applied insecticideto prevent complete deoliation and/or inection by bacterialwilt which is transmitted by cucumber beetles. Squash bugsmust be controlled early in the growing season and can bestbe located by examining the underside o leaves or eggswhich are laid in groups. Aphids and mites can cause dam-age to leaves and leave deposits on ruit, reducing marketableyield. Low numbers can be tolerated throughout most o theseason and scouting results will indicate whether populationsare increasing and should be controlled.Good ruit set and development or cucumbers aredependent upon insects, primarily honeybees, to pollinatethe emale owers. Flowers are receptive to pollination ora matter o hours on the day they open. Flowers should beexamined to determine activity o honeybees. I ewer thanone bee per ten owers is noted during the morning hours,the producer should bring bee hives into the feld to ensureadequate pollination.
Cucumber is susceptible to several diseases that attackthe roots, oliage, and ruit. The most common diseases inOklahoma have been anthracnose, angular lea spot, downymildew, bacterial wilt, powdery mildew, and virus diseases.Gummy stem blight, damping-o, and root-knot nematodesalso have been problems. Consult OSU Extension CircularE-853
Cucurbit Production and Pest Management or E-929 Guide or Identifcation and Management o Diseases to Cucurbit Vegetable Crops
to help identiy these diseases.Disease control is essential in the production o high qualityslicing cucumbers. A preventive program that combines theuse o cultural practices, genetic resistance, and chemicalcontrol as needed usually provides the best results.Cultural practices are useul or limiting the establish-ment, spread, and survival o pathogens that cause cucum-ber diseases. Many o the ungal, bacterial, and nematodepathogens survive in old crop debris and in soil. Fields shouldbe rotated with non-cucurbit crops or at least three years toreduce pathogen levels. Grass crops are ideal or rotationswhere nematodes are a problem. Select well-drained soils tominimize damping-o, root rots, and ruit rots. Late plantingsshould not be situated nearby and downwind o early plantedcucurbit felds where oliar or virus diseases already exist.Avoid the movement o contaminated soil or plant debrisinto clean felds on workers or equipment. Diseases such asanthracnose, angular lea spot, and gummy stem blight areknown to be carried on seed. This can lead to the introductiono diseases into clean felds. Purchase seed rom reputablesources and apply a ungicide seed treatment prior to plant-ing. Most oliar diseases are spread by water-splash or areavored by long periods o lea wetness. Utilize drip irrigationor avoid requent sprinkler irrigation with small amounts owater. Finally, use tillage practices soon ater harvest thatpromote the rapid decomposition o old vines and ruit.The use o disease-resistant varieties is an economicalmeans o controlling diseases. In slicing cucumber, excellentresistance is available to most o the important diseases andvariety selection should be the primary method o diseasecontrol. Several varieties are resistant to angular lea spot,anthracnose, downy mildew, powdery mildew, scab, and oneor more virus diseases. Consult OSU Extension Circular E-853
Cucurbit Production and Pest Management
or a listingo locally adapted varieties with disease resistance.Given proper cultivar selection, oliar disease manage-ment with ungicides should not be necessary unless gummystem blight becomes a problem. Fields should be monitoredat least weekly or early disease detection. A spray program