While choosing the crops to be planted, it is important to choose the varieties which are appropriate for the growing season and have a potential of healthy growing, high productivity and long shelf-life. The appropriate sowing time for tomato changes depending on the growing environment and region.
PROTECTED CULTIVATION OF TOMATO
It is appropriate to sow tomato seeds at the end of July and beginning of August for the Fall season, in the middle of September and the first week of October for the single crop season, at the end of November and the first week of December for the Spring season.
When the cotyledons leaves of tomato seedlings are wide open and parallel to the ground, they are transplanted into plastic bags or viols. Seedlings ready for plantation should be planted in double-row system from north to south. Planting measure is 45-15X20 inches for double crop growing and 40-20×15 inches for single crop growing. Seedlings which have 4 to 6 leaves are ready for plantation. In fall season, planting should be done in time when the seedling is still small.
Fertilization should be done in accordance with the results of soil and leaf analysis. In fall season cultivation, the greenhouses should be covered with a fine muslin to protect against white flies. In single crop and spring seasons, mulch and heat curtain can be used for forcing and saving from energy. The subsoil, which is 10-15 inches under the soil, should be broken once in two or three years.
PROTECTED CULTIVATION OF CUCUMBER
Cucumber is one of the most important vegetables grown in greenhouses. Grower should begin with a variety appropriate for cucumber cultivation.
As sowing is done throughout the whole year in the greenhouses, the varieties recommended for each season is different. There are also some seasons in which sowing and planting are more intensely done.
One of the most important requirements of successful cultivation is growing high-quality seedling. High-quality seedling is possible with a good seedling compost, good maintenance and appropriate growing environment. Traditionally, the seedling compost is prepared by mixing farm manure, soil and sand. Farm manure should be procured at least 3 months before. It should be well-drained and contain no substance harmful for the plants. The health of the growing plants gives us an idea of the quality of the manure. Soil can be garden, grass or forest soil.
Cucumber is Too Sensitive to Diseases
As greenhouses are empty in fall and single crop seasons, seedlings are planted when they have 3 real leaves in these seasons while in spring they should have 4 to 5 leaves to be planted. During the growing period in greenhouse, precautions for plant protection should not be neglected. Cucumber requires good drainaged, dissolvable, sandy light soil which is rich in organic substances and free of diseases and pests. Among the other vegetables, cucumber is the one most sensitive to diseases.
Necessary Precautions Should be Taken
In case there is a problem of soil diseases, necessary precautions should be taken. The most practical and cheapest way for this purpose is to solarize the greenhouse. In plantation, first basic dressing is done in accordance with the soil analysis. Plantation should be done in north-south direction. In double-row planting system, spacing should be 3 to 4 feet between the centers of each pair of rows while the distance between the two rows within a pair is approximately 2 feet. The spacing of plants in the row should be 20 inches in single crop season and 18 inches in fall and spring seasons.