Discover the many types of cucumbers! From crisp and classic slicing to cute and crunchy pickling, there’s a perfect one for every recipe.
Cucumbers are a refreshing and versatile vegetable that can be enjoyed in various ways, from salads to sandwiches to pickles. There are many different types of cucumbers, each with their own unique characteristics and uses. In this post, we’ll explore the two main categories of cucumbers: Slicing and Picking, and the different varieties within each category.
Also, learn How to Grow Cucumbers in Pots!
Slicing Cucumber Types
Slicing cucumbers are the most common type of cucumber and are typically eaten fresh in salads or sandwiches. They are generally dark and thick-skinned, long, and usually sliced for consumption. Here are some of the most popular varieties of slicing cucumbers.
1. English Cucumber
English cucumber is a popular slicing cultivar with thin skin and little to no seeds. Mild and sweet flavored English cucumbers are bitter-free and often used in salads and sandwiches.
2. American Slicing Cucumber
These are the most widely grown and consumed cucumbers in the United States. They are typically longer and thicker than English cucumbers and have slightly bumpy skin. American slicing cucumbers grow to around 8 to 10 inches long.
3. Marketmore 76
This slicing cucumber variety’s good quality and yield are why it’s a popular heirloom. Growing 8-10 inches long with dark green rugged skin, it’s resistant to pests and diseases.
4. Ashley Cucumber
Another recognizable cucumber heirloom has been a staple in many vegetable gardens. It is well-suited for containers and is resistant to downy mildew and other fungal diseases. Cukes are 6-8 inches long and hang low on vines making them easier to harvest.
5. Persian Cucumber
It’s a small-sized cucumber, around 5-6 inches long, with smooth thin skin. You don’t need to peel these baby cucumbers before slicing. The mild and sweet flavor makes them an excellent choice for snaking.
6. Bush Champion
Bush champion is a perfect cucumber variety if you lack space but still want a bountiful harvest. It’s a suitable choice for containers and raised garden beds. The 9-11 inch cukes are packed with flavors and are disease-resistant.
7. Muncher Burpless
Burpless cucumber varieties contain fewer seeds and have low levels of cucurbitacin, which imparts a bitter taste to cucumber. Muncher burpless is a popular variety of burpless cucumbers, and as the name suggests, it causes less burping than other cucumbers.
8. Dasher II
It’s a hybrid slicer that yields good quality cucumbers with a uniform texture. Being resistant to diseases and heat, it won’t require special care.
9. Diva Cucumber
Cukes are 6-8 inches long and with a smooth dark green surface. It’s a burpless cucumber, thus thin-skinned and bitter-free. Use it in salads and sandwiches!
Picking cucumbers, or gherkins, are smaller and have a thicker, bumpier skin than slicing cucumbers. They are typically used for pickling but can also be eaten fresh. Here are some of the most popular types of pickling cucumbers.
1. National Pickling Cucumbers
The cukes of these pickling cucumbers are thick, round, and short, with bumpy skin. It grows to 6 inches but is ready for harvest when it’s 2-3 inches for gherkin-style pickling.
2. Boston Pickling
Although it’s a pickling cultivar, Boston cucumbers are also used for slicing. Black spine cukes are small, round, and ready for harvest when they are 2-6 inches long.
3. Burpee Pickler
It’s a black-spined hybrid cucumber cultivar, which is also early maturing. Exceptional taste and versatility make it popular among gardeners. Harvest when it measures about 3-5 inches in length.
Picklebush is a small, compact cucumber variety suitable for raised garden beds and containers. Although the vines are compact and bushy, it still produces a heavy yield. Whether you enjoy fresh, crisp cucumbers or homemade pickles, Picklebush makes an excellent choice.
It’s a resilient pickling cucumber hybrid with having high yield and produces medium-sized cukes. The dark green skin is covered with white spines giving off a distinctive appearance. Crisp and juicy flesh makes it great for consumption in both raw and pickled form.
6. Homemade Pickling Cucumbers
It’s an heirloom cultivar that produces 5-6 inches-long oval-shaped cukes with bumpy skin. Also known as Southern Homemade Pickles, they have a mild, sweet taste that is less bitter than other varieties of cucumber
7. Chicago Pickling
Harvest it early when it’s 3-4 inches for pickling. Firm skin and a crisp texture make Chicago pickling cucumber perfect for brine or vinegar preservation. Ease of cultivation and high yield make it a popular choice for both home and commercial growers.