The visiting card of the Nezhin city
15 years ago, on December 16, 2005, a monument to the city’s symbol, the Nezhin cucumber, was opened near the Nezhinsky Cannery. This is the first monument which was installed on the territory of Ukraine to fruit and vegetable culture. The monument is a sculptural image of a cellar and a barrel with a cucumber. The author of the project is a local artist Leonid Vorobyov.
Cucumber is made of unique green granite, brought from Italy. The sculptural composition symbolizes the ancient process of pickling cucumbers: in wooden barrels, which were placed in a cool cellar.
This ancient vegetable has not only a thousand-year history of cultivation, but also unforgettable taste. Cucumbers started growing in the 3rd millennium B.C. in present-day India. Its taste and medicinal properties were appreciated by the ancient Chinese. And the Egyptians and Greeks depicted oblong vegetables in their own place of worship. At the beginning of the XVII century, cucumber seeds were introduced to the territory of Nezhin by Greek settlers. It began to be sown in the adjacent piece of land of Oster. In addition to growing cucumbers in the city, the Greeks are also credited with the practice of pickling these vegetables.
The year 1850 is considered to be the official beginning of pickling cucumbers in Nezhin. All due to the fact that since the middle of the XIX century, some enterprising people from Nezhin have been creating whole mini-enterprises that specialize in growing and salting cucumbers. The first industrialists to engage in this business were the Jewish entrepreneurs Goldenberg. Thanks to them, small and crispy Nezhin cucumbers became known far beyond Nezhin. At the end of the XIX century, large enterprises were already engaged in the production of the famous cucumber.
Depending on historical events, the cucumber industry was reducing and stopped, but then rise again. Beginning in 1920, the production of Nezhin cucumbers began to grow annually and was no longer measured by barrels, but by wagons.
In the ХІХ century, the glory of Nezhin cucumbers was already sounded half the world.
The local tradition of pickling in Nezhin is supported by the Nezhinsky Cannery, which to a great extent best known for this vegetable.
In honor of their symbol in September 2013, the Nezhin residents launched the city festival “His Majesty, the Nezhin Cucumber” and hold it every autumn.