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I am growing gherkins for the first time this year.  They are now approx 6 inches long and quite fat.  How do I tell when they are ready to pick?  Can they be eaten raw or are they always pickled?



  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 17,580

    Are gherkins  not cucumbers?

  • No, gherkins are a little smaller.  When you see them for sale in jars they are whole but usually just 2 or 3 inches long  with tiny protrusions,  The type I have grown are bigger but I am not sure if bigger means they are inedible, which is why I asked the question.  I probably wouldn't have grown them but our supermarket was doing a seed promotion and we were given gherkin seeds.

  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 17,580

    I thought they had to be pickled in vinegar while small.

  • Kitty 2Kitty 2 Posts: 5,150

    Like fidget I think gherkins are small pickled cucumbers.  Don't know if a certain variety called gherkin is used. image 

    My marketmore cucumbers have the little bumps on the skin. 

  • They were labelled as gherkins, they seem to have more bumps on them than our usual cucumbers have.  Now I am confused. 

  • GuybrushGuybrush Posts: 172

    A proper home grown cucumber is knobbly from my experience. You don't want them to get too old or the seeds will be large and inedible. I'd suggest you pick ones that are the same size as a gherkin and pickle em with vinegar, water, sugar, dill, peppercorns and capers and have the rest in salads (deseeding as necessary) :-)

  • Pete.8Pete.8 Posts: 11,292

    I'm growing Cucino cucumbers. Ready when they're 4" long, and with a smooth thin skin. Had over 20 in June

    Billericay - Essex

    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • 4"!! Our Gherkins were bigger than that when I picked them earlier today - but too big really - they just seem to swell up over night - I should have been more vigilant.  However we are spot on for our courgettes which we check/pick each day. I have not heard of Cucino cucumbers before Pete - are they bitter as some varieties are?

  • Pete.8Pete.8 Posts: 11,292

    I'm a life-long cucumber-hater.
    But having got a new g/house I thought I'd have a go for the fun of it and read good reviews of Cucino - RHS AGM too. Blurb says it's a thin skinned lunchbox cucumber. F1 too so only female flowers, no need to worry about picking off male flowers.
    Have to say I'm now a cucumber convert.
    They grow to about 4" then as you've noted they swell overnight and ready to pick next morning. Pop in the fridge for a while and they are delicious. No bitterness at all and skin so thin it's not noticeable.
    I've picked about 25 during June and had 5 this morning - more ready for tomorrow- 


    Billericay - Essex

    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • Goodness Pete they look prolific and you make them sound really easy to grow and ideal to eat too.  I am growing Burpless and La Diva cucumber plants for the first time this year - but as I am a bit limited for space so along with a Gherkin and tomato plants they are all squashed up together which isn't ideal for them.

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