Want the perfect slicing cucumber to complete a fresh salad, wrap, or sandwich? Look no further than the Sweet Slice cucumber. This hybrid variety is a popular option, as it delivers a sweet and refreshing taste.
Keep reading to learn all about Sweet Slice cucumbers, including how to grow them and where to buy them!
History of the Sweet Slice Cucumber
While cucumbers date back to India over 3,000 years ago, Sweet Slice is a recent addition to the cucumber family. This monoecious, F1 hybrid was developed in response to the industry’s need for another burpless, high-yielding variety.
Sweet Slice also boasts excellent disease-resistance. It can ward off Angular Leaf Spot (ALS), Anthracnose, Cucumber Mosaic Virus (CMV), Downy Mildew, Powdery Mildew, Scab, and more.
Today, these cucumbers are grown commercially, as well as in many home gardens.
Characteristics of Sweet Slice Cucumbers
Like most slicers, the Sweet Slice cucumber is longer than the average pickling cucumber. It measures approximately 8”–12” long at maturity. With that said, Sweet Slice is a little beefier than most slicers, measuring one to two inches in diameter. The fruit’s blossom ends are usually tapered.
Typically, the cucumber’s outer skin takes on a deep shade of green. Its sweet flesh, on the other hand, is a creamy white color.
This cucumber is a burpless variety, meaning it contains little to no acidity. As a result, Sweet Slice cucumbers rarely have a bitter flavor. Rather, they possess a sweet flavor, as the name suggests. The cucumber’s tender skin is very thin, so peeling the fruit is unnecessary.
About the Sweet Slice Cucumber
Slicing cucumbers don’t pickle as well as other varieties, but they are perfect for salads, sandwiches, wraps, and fresh eating. The Sweet Slice is no exception.
Like most cucumber varieties, Sweet Slice offers an array of health benefits. Its high protein, fiber, and water content not only fuels and hydrates the body but also regulates digestion. With just 40–50 calories per cucumber, it is also a great snacking option for those pursuing weight loss.
As for nutrients, the cucumber’s many vitamins and minerals include vitamin C, vitamin K, magnesium, potassium, and manganese.
What’s more, the fruit’s antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties can help nourish the skin. In fact, cucumbers are often used to treat burns, skin irritations, and other blemishes.
While slicing cucumbers are most often used in salads and sandwiches, you can incorporate them into hot dishes as well.
Chop them up and add them to a stir fry, for example, or roast them for a crunchy side dish. For those with gluten sensitivities, Sweet Slice cucumbers can even be spiralized and used as a pasta substitute.
Growing Sweet Slice Cucumbers
While Sweet Slice is a vigorous, high-yielding variety, it needs the right growing conditions to thrive.
Most importantly, these cucumbers—like most varieties—require warm weather. Generally, you will want to wait until the last frost has passed before sowing your seeds. Otherwise, you can plant them indoors a few weeks early and transplant them once the first true leaf emerges.
First, prepare the area of your garden bed where your Sweet Slice plants will live. Wait for soil temperatures to reach 60–90 degrees and make sure pH levels are mildly acidic to neutral (5.5–7.5). To promote consistent growth, apply an organic fertilizer to fertile soil.
It’s also important to remember that Sweet Slice is a vining plant. Consider providing a trellis or another structure for it to climb. Plants will grow to roughly 10 inches tall and up to 8 feet wide. Beans, corn, peas, and radishes are some of the best companion plants for Sweet Slice cucumbers.
Next, plant your seeds roughly two to four feet apart and gently cover them with approximately ½” of soil. Your cucumber plants should receive six hours of full sunlight per day and one inch of water per week.
A Sweet Slice cucumber seed takes roughly 6–10 days to germinate and fruit will reach full maturity at around 60–65 days.
It’s worth noting that cucumbers don’t always respond well to transplanting. If you must start growing your cucumbers before the last frost, however, you may do so indoors.
Sow your seeds in four-inch pots during late March or early April—roughly three or four weeks before transplanting. When preparing your outdoor garden bed, use plenty of compost and fertilizer to stimulate growth and prevent any deformities.
After transplanting your seedlings in warm soil, be sure to water them consistently and gradually introduce them to full sunlight.
Typically, Sweet Slice cucumbers will be ready for harvest by July, August, or September. Depending on your location, your plants may produce fruit until mid-October.
Unless you plan to pickle your cucumbers, you can wait until they have reached their full size before picking them. Don’t leave them for too long, however, as this may stunt production.
Where to Buy Sweet Slice Cucumbers
There are many different slicing cucumbers on the market. Chances are that your local supermarket will only keep two or three of them stocked at a time.
If you can’t find Sweet Slice at your local grocery or farmers market, you may want to grow your own. Fortunately, you can purchase various quantities of Sweet Slice seeds online at Amazon.
Wrapping Up Sweet Slice Cucumbers
Due to its productivity and sweet flavor, the Sweet Slice cucumber is a popular choice for both buyers and growers. If you plan to grow these cucumbers yourself, you won’t be sorry!
Ready to continue discovering these funky fresh vegetables? Then learn more about cucumbers by checking out my planting guides, recipe tips, brand suggestions, and more!
- About the Author
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Ben Morgan is a husband, father, and writer for Apple Pie Media. He grew up in Tasmania, Australia, a largely rural territory that has earned the nickname, “The Apple Isle,” for its many apple orchards. Some of Ben’s fondest memories include family trips to one of many local orchards, where he would enjoy plucking and eating fresh fruits with his younger siblings.
Today, Ben, his wife, and daughter love to visit their local South Carolina farmers market on the weekends. After discovering a new variety of fruit or veggie, he looks forward to sitting down at his computer to share his knowledge and experiences with other aspiring green thumbs.