Cucumber is tender and whimsical plant. The cucumber comes from the humid tropical forests of India. In natural conditions it grows in the shade of the trees, almost never sees direct sunlight, moisture, he gets more than enough from heavy tropical rains, and with a sharp night setback temperature characteristic of our band, wild cucumber total stranger.
Therefore, the cucumber does not like too hot and dry weather, and cold, and abrupt temperature changes. These conditions are for cucumber stress, and quality of protection, he begins to produce anti-stress substance - cucurbitacin. It is this substance and gives the cucumbers bitter taste. It is concentrated mainly in the skin of cucumbers near the stem.
Experienced gardeners advise: to cucumbers did not gorceli, it is necessary to strictly observe the light and temperature conditions in the greenhouse or in the garden to grow cucumbers in a well-lit places, watering only warm water and only in warm weather, cover with cold weather, be sure to feed (but not fresh manure!).
The bitterness of the fruit of the cucumber is due to specific gene, i.e. it is a genetic trait. Already withdrawn the European and Dutch salad varieties of cucumbers, which never taste bitter. They have a gene that prevents the formation of cucurbitacins.
not to throw away the bitter cucumber, you can clear it from the peel, but you need to keep in mind that with the skin you're throwing away most of the vitamins and other nutrients. To get rid of the bitter taste, you can soak the bitter cucumbers for a few hours.
Cucurbitacin destroyed by heat treatment and by the action of water, so bitter cucumber is quite suitable for pickling and salting.
Despite the unpleasant taste, cucurbitacin not harmful, but, on the contrary, healing: for example, he has the ability to suppress the growth of malignant tumors, promotes better functioning of the pancreas, liver, intestines. In China specially grown bitter varieties of cucumbers and use them for medicinal purposes.
By the way...
Cucurbitacin produce not only cucumbers, but all plants of the family Cucurbitaceae, in hot and dry weather.
The fruits of wild cucumbers completely inedible due to the high content of cucurbitacins.