Why did my cucumber plants not grow in a raised bed?


I planted cucumber seeds in a raised bed 1 in early May and they did not come up. I was given some well established cucumber plants that I placed in the same raised bed and they nearly died within a week. I transplanted them to another raised bed and they are looking better… they may even live. There are tomatoes growing in raised bed 1 and they are blossoming but have developed some yellowing leaves. I added a tsp of blood meal around the drip edge of the tomato plants which appears to be helping the tomato plants indicated by new leaf growth. So what is wrong with the soil in raised bed 1? 


Jonathan Foster, Special Project Assistant 

Unfortunately, early May is a little early for outdoor direct seeding of cucumber (MOFGA has an excellent seed planting calendar here–June 1 is the recommended date), so conditions may just not have been warm enough yet for germination. For the yellowing leaves, it’s tough to diagnose just from the description, though given our recent constant rain, a number of fungal conditions have been noted in tomatoes. Clemson Univ Extension has a great resource on tomato problems here that may give you an idea what you’re dealing with; if you don’t see what you’re looking for, you can also submit photos or samples to the UMaine Plant Disease Diagnostic Lab for identification.

If you have concerns over the soil, I would recommend getting a soil test via the UMaine Soil Analytical Lab–their homepage has instructions on how to obtain and submit the sample.