Fun & Easy Science for Kids
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Cucumber  

Ever wondered where the term, “cool as a cucumber” came from? Turns out that cucumbers can actually cool the temperature of the blood and reduce swelling when applied to the skin. And that’s not all. Besides tasting delicious in salads, cucumbers can curb bad breath. The compounds in a sliced cucumber can kill the bacteria in your mouth that causes bad breath.

 

Fun Facts

  • Cucumbers love warm, slightly moist conditions. They’re originally from tropical regions, after all. They don’t grow well in hot, dry areas.
  • Cucumbers are easy to grow in the home garden if you have a sunny spot and a little space. They have a reputation for being bitter, which can be caused by drought. Newer varieties are less prone to this problem. Keep the soil moist and pick them promptly for sweeter flavor.
  • Some varieties are yellow and shaped like a lemon. Other varieties are extra-long or tiny.
  • Cucumbers are a great source of B vitamins, folic acid, and vitamin C. They’re also 95 percent water.
  • Cucumbers are usually eaten fresh or pickled. Pickles are made by processing cucumbers with salt, vinegar, and spices. Some pickles are sour, while others are sweet.
  • Cucumbers are members of the cucurbit family. They’re actually fruits (they contain seeds) and they’re related to watermelons, pumpkins, and squash.

 

Vocabulary

  1. Reputation: what something is known for
  2. Drought: lack of water
  3. Prone: likely to experience

 

Questions and Answers

Question: Is a cucumber skin edible?

Answer: Yes, although sellers often coat the skins in wax so they don’t lose moisture. It’s better to peel these skins than eat the wax. English cucumbers are wrapped in plastic wrap. They haven’t been waxed so you can eat the peel.

 

Learn More

Watch a video about growing cucumbers in Africa.

Learn some new recipes for cucumbers.

 

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Tobin, Declan. (2019). Fun Cucumber Facts for Kids. Easy Science for Kids. Retrieved from https://easyscienceforkids.com/cucumber/

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