the effect of increasing nitrogen doses was evaluated on the gherkin yield, cv. nordestino. this study was carried out on the period from may to september 2006, at the universidade federal da paraíba, in areia, paraiba state, brazil, in an experimental design of randomized blocks with six treatments (0; 50; 100; 150, 200 and 250 kg ha-1 n) and four replications. twenty plants per plot were used, on a spacing of 2 x 1 m. fruit average mass, number and fruits production per plant, and yield of fruits were evaluated. fruits average mass reached the maximum value of 21 g using the dose of 155 kg ha-1 of n. the maximum number (21 fruits) and the maximum fruits production per plant of gherkins (469 g) were reached with 153 and 187 kg ha-1 of n, respectively. the dose of 188 kg ha-1 of n was responsible for the maximum yield of 12.7 t ha-1 of fruits. for the highest maximum economic efficiency the dose of 183 kg ha-1 of n was responsible for the yield of 12.7 t ha-1 of commercial fruits, meaning a development of 9.4 t ha-1 in the fruits productivity, relative to n absence.