Sweet Marketmore (Marketmore 76) is a very popular variety in the home garden. It is 8 to 9 inches long at maturity, dark green and is resistant to many cucumber diseases. It is an excellent slicer in salads and for other fresh uses. Cucumbers are the ultimate low-calorie snack: Juicy and refreshing, you can eat all you want without gaining weight because they are more than 95 percent water.
Cukes are hot weather plants naturally, but they will grow in cooler climates. They hate cold soil and cold weather, so the soil should be at least 65 degrees, preferably 70 degrees, when planting. In warm parts of the country you can put seeds directly into the ground; in shorter-season areas (like the Northwest), you should start seedlings indoors 2-3 weeks before putting them out into the garden (which should be a week or two after the last spring frost). If you'll be transplanting seedlings (rather than sowing directly into the garden) remember that young cucumber plants transplant best. They resent having their roots disturbed, so avoid touching the roots when planting them into the garden.
To avoid cucumber beetle damage, you can cover the plants with garden fabric (row cover). Do this at planting time, before the beetles arrive. Pin down the edges with Earth Staples or with boards or rocks. Since cukes are insect-pollinated, the plants must be uncovered once they start to bloom. Like many vegetables, the more cucumbers you pick, the more you get. Never let cukes get big and seedy or the plant will assume that its work is done. Although there are varieties listed as pickling cukes and others called slicers, either kind can be pickled or eaten fresh in salads. Be sure the soil stays consistently moist or your cucumbers will be tough and bitter.
-Most of the general information provided is from the Vegetable Encyclopedia at www.gardeners.com, with additional facts provided by your friends at Seattle Seed Company.-