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Farmer shares simple trick for saving overgrown cucumbers: 'I teach everybody about this'

By using this hack, farmers and gardeners can avoid throwing out overgrown or overwatered cucumbers.

By using this hack, farmers and gardeners can avoid throwing out overgrown or overwatered cucumbers.

Photo Credit: TikTok

It is a terrible feeling to successfully grow your own food only to find that the plants are bitter. Luckily, TikToker Farmer Don (@tri.cycle.farms) has revealed a genius hack to save produce such as cucumbers and remove any bad flavor in just seconds. 

To make things even easier, all gardeners need is the cucumber itself and a knife. 

The scoop 

The bitter flavor in a cucumber can be drawn out just by using part of the plant, Farmer Don showed in the video

@tri.cycle.farms One of our favorite videos of Farmer Don from last year, showing us how to take the bitterness out of a cucumber that grew a little too large! 🥒 🌱 #tricyclefarms #farmingwisdom #farmingfacts #gardeningtips ♬ original sound - Tri Cycle Farms

He explained that fellow farmers and gardeners should cut off one end of the cucumber — a piece large enough to grab — and then begin rubbing that piece on the end of the sliced plant. 

After a few seconds, a "milky ooze" will begin coming out of the cucumber. Farmer Don recommends repeating the motion until the substance is no longer oozing out of the plant, indicating that the bitter flavor is gone. 

"So instead of having a bitter cucumber, I have a big cucumber that tastes like cucumber," he said. 

How is it helping? 

Spending weeks and months growing a cucumber only for it to be bitter once harvested can be defeating. The bitterness is caused by a compound called cucurbitacin, which exists to deter wild animals or insects from eating the plant, per the Nebraska Extension. 

Cucumbers have been found to turn bitter when the plant gets stressed, typically due to factors such as hot and dry weather, overwatering, or even extreme temperature swings. Farmers may also find cucumbers turn bitter after being left on the vine too long. 

With these challenges, gardening might seem like a daunting task. It can, however, provide a number of benefits for your personal life and the environment around you. 

Growing your own food has been found to save Americans hundreds of dollars, as just one investment of around $70 can yield up to 300 pounds of produce annually, worth up to $600. This also helps reduce individual pollution footprints that rise with the purchase of mass-produced and transported goods. 

Growing and harvesting your own food has also been found to boost personal health, with more physical activity, decreased stress and anxiety levels, and increased fiber intake. Given the many benefits of gardening and growing your own produce, it is extremely important to avoid giving up on or tossing your potential harvest. 

By using Farmer Don's hack, farmers and gardeners can avoid throwing out overgrown or overwatered cucumbers they once thought were bitter and no good to eat. 

What people are saying

Many TikTok users boosted the produce-saving hack, with one person saying a relative also taught them the trick. 

"My grandma showed me this long ago and I've been doing ever since," they wrote. "Works good takes the bitter out."

"Yup. I teach everybody about this. They always say I've never been told that," another said.

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