Propagating cucumbers from stem cuttings is a easy and inexpensive way to expand the amount of plants you have, quickly. Cucumbers are widely cultivated warm-season vegetables that thrive in soil temperatures of 70 degrees or more. Hardy to U.S. Department of Agriculture hardiness zone 4 through 11, cucumbers grow in two forms, vining and bush. Vining varieties are able to survive in small spaces, thanks to their ability to climb. They have trailing stems, large green leaves and curling tendrils that will attach themselves, allowing the plant to grow upright on most structures. Cucumber plants are easily propagated by seed or stem cuttings. Cuttings are best taken from healthy green plants in the early morning when the stems are fully hydrated and swollen.
Vining cucumber plants tend to yield more fruit that bush varieties.
1. Cut 1/8 inch behind the second set of leaves from the outer tip of the cucumber stem with pruning shears, making the cut straight across the stem in one quick swipe. The stem cutting should be about 3 to 5 inches long.
2. Pinch off the second set of leaves by hand at the leaf node, just above where the leaf and the stem meet. Keep the first set of leaves intact, because they will help produce roots and supply energy to the new cucumber plant.
3. Dip the cut end of the stem cutting upright into indole-3-butyric acid powered rooting hormone, until the hormone generously covers to just above both leaf nodes from the second set of leaves. Lightly tap the stem cutting on the brim of the hormone container to knock off additional hormone power.
4. Fill a cell starter pack up to the brim with soil-less potting mix and insert the cucumber stem cutting upright, about 1/2 inch into the soil, covering the leaf nodes with soil. Place the cell starter pack in a warm location with full to partial sun exposure.
5. Water the cucumber stem cutting daily with a spray bottle set on a fine mist until the soil is