Though I have been
wanting to grow Arkansas Little Leaf Cucumber, ever since growing it in my first
summer garden, it was not until I recently had access to a greenhouse when I
finally made the time and room to grow this incredible cucumber variety.
|The Arkansas Little Leaf Cucumber|
At the time when I
last grew this variety I had not experienced any amount of success with other
cucumbers and was highly impressed with the results. Thanks to the University
of Arkansas developing and releasing this variety (initially a patented
variety) gardeners are able to grow a very prolific cucumber in any climate.
One of the ways in which this variety can grow in various climates has to do
with its parthenocarpic fruit. When a plant exhibits Parthenocarpy (literally meaning “virgin fruit”)
this means that the vines will produce female fruit without pollination.
|Male Flowers of the Arkansas Little Leaf|
Though plants that are parthenocarpic will produce fruit without pollination, any fruit produced in this manner will be completely sterile. The fruit
will simply produce without seeds. Bees or industrious gardeners are required
to pollinate fruit if there is to be seed for future generations. As there are
generally plenty of male flowers, pollination does not become an issue unless
the temperatures outside are over 100 degrees Fahrenheit. In this case, the
gardener must wait until the temperatures cool down so that the male and female
flower blossoms do not wilt in the heat.
|The Immature Female Blossom at the perfect time for Pollination|
|Because they are parthenocarpic, the fruit can keep its flower for a while|
The vines of the Arkansas Little Leaf cucumber are
generally very disease resistant and hardy. The cucumbers themselves are a bit
thick-skinned (much unlike the Carosello I am used to growing). This is an
incredibly prolific variety that will produce and produce until the plant
itself dies. With the fruit exhibiting a very consistent size, Arkansas Little
Leaf makes the perfect cucumber for pickling in or out of a greenhouse.
|Arkansas Little Leaf Cucumbers are prolific despite any outside stresses.|
On a side note: If you would like to pick up some seed of this variety, you might try my Cucumber Shop.
Lastly, to summarize: when
presented with a pretty prolific parthenocarpic pickler, promptly pick the Arkansas
Little Leaf to pack into your next pickling pints.
|Arkansas Little Leaf is a consistent pickling Cucumber|