Watermelons ( How To Grow, Care For, Pick, And Cut )

Having success growing watermelons in pots starts before you even plant your watermelon seeds watermelon seeds. Next thing select a container or you can use a cell-pack. If you use a cell-pack get one with a heat mat and use a good soilless mix to start your seeds in.

Now, select a container that will be large enough for your watermelon to thrive and grow strong. Watermelons grow fast and require plenty of fresh water, so the best thing to use is a 5-gallon or even larger size container. Make sure what ever you use has enough drainage holes.

Begin to fill the watermelon container or cell-packs with potting soil or other soilless mix. What is a soilless mix, anyways? Is growing items that does not include the use of soil. Instead, plants are grown in a variety of organic and inorganic materials. The plus, for using these materials rather than garden soil allows gardeners to grow healthier plants without the threat of soil-borne diseases. Plants grown in soilless mixes are less likely to be bothered by pests.

Some of the most common soilless growing mediums include peat moss, perlite, vermiculite, and sannd. Generally, these mediums are mixed together rather than used alone, as each usually provides its own function. Fertilizers are also commonly added to the mix, providing important nutrients.
volcanic rock
Below is a list of soilless growing mediums:
1. Sphagnum Peat Moss has a coarse texture but is lightweight and sterile. The peat moss promotes adequate aeration and holds water well. But the moss is usually difficult to moisten on its own and is best used with other mediums. This growing medium is ideal for germinating seeds.
2. Perlite is a form of expanded of expanded volcanic rock and is usually white in color. Perlite provides good drainage, is lightweight, and holds air. Perlite should also be mixed with other mediums like peat moss since it does not retain water and will float to the top when plants are watered.
3. Vermiculite is often used with or instead of perlite. This particular form of mica is more compact and, unlike perlite, does well at helping to retain water. On the other hand, vermiculite does not provide as good aeration as does the perlite.
4. Coarse Sand is also used in soilless mixes. Sand improves drainage and aeration but doesn’t retain water.
In addition to the above mediums, these other materials, such as bark and coconut coir, can be used. Bark is often added to improve drainage and promote air circulation. Coconut coir is similar to peat moss and works much the same way, only with less mess.

When filling your container don’t use dirt from your garden. This will compact quickly in the container and will make growing watermelons in containers difficult.

Next, you now need to choose a variety of watermelon that will do well in pots. When planting watermelon in pots, you need to look for a compact variety that grows small fruit.

The list includes.
1. Moon and Stars: Red Watermelon Heirloom Seeds
1A. Moon and Stars: Yellow Watermelon Heirloom Seeds
2. Sugar Baby: Red Watermelon Heirloom Seeds
3. Crimson Sweet: Red Watermelon Heirloom Seeds
3A. Crimson Sweet: Yellow Watermelon Heirloom Seeds
4. Early Moonbeam: Yellow Watermelon Heirloom Seeds
5. Jubilee: Red Watermelon Heirloom Seeds
6. Golden Midget: Red Watermelon Heirloom Seeds with a Golden Colored Rind
7. Jade Star: Red Watermelon Seeds
8. Millennium: Red Watermelon Seeds
9. Orange Sweet: Orange Watermelon Seeds
10. Solitaire: Red Watermelon Seeds

Now that you have selected the watermelons that will grow in your container(s), place the seed into the soil. The seed should be plant 3 times deeper than it is long. You water the seed well. You can also transplant a seedling that has been started indoors into the soil. Whether you are planting seeds or a seedling, make sure that all chances of frost have passed outside.

Growing Conditions And Plant Information

Growing watermelons requires lots of space, lots of sun, lots of water and lots of
nutrients. Watermelons require a lengthy growing season of up to 100 days. They are greedy, rambling vines, like all plants in the cucurbiteae family ( e.g. zucchini, squash, pumpkin,cucumbers …)

Watermelons are not particularly difficult to grow, but because they are so demanding. I don’t consider watermelons a good plant for beginner gardeners. ( You can get lucky if you live in optimum conditions ).

I also don’t consider them a good plant for anyone with restricted space, water, or average soils. But, if you have a large enough container you can grow watermelon.

You need to put a lot into a watermelon, and what you get out in terms of nutrition is not a lot. So from a permaculture point of view watermelons wouldn’t be the very first thing to worry about.

I get way too many questions about growing watermelons, they are very popular. I grow many different kinds of watermelons myself, so there we go. I hope you enjoy, this is for all of my many readers.

How To Grow Watermelons ( When And Where To Grow Them )

If you live in the tropics the dry season, which is winter, is the best watermelon growing season. But, most of us don’t live in the tropics. So here is what we can do.

Watermelons do not cope very well with extreme heat or the humid, soggy conditions of our wet season/summer. Fungal diseases and bugs will wipe them out in no time at all.

If you live in a cooler climate, then summer is the time to grow watermelon.

You do need at the very least three months, up to 100 days, of reliably hot, sunny weather to grow and ripen a watermelon. During that time your average daily maximum temperature should be at least 20 – 25 degrees C. or 70 – 80 degrees F. Warmer is even better.

(There are different watermelon varieties, so if you are at the low end of that, look for a faster maturing variety.

Grow watermelons in full sun. You also need an abundant supply of good water (rain water if at all possible) and nutrients (good soil).

And you need space. As I said before, a rambling vine. They like to go wandering and smother everything around them.

A Guide To Early Watermelon Varieties:

Yes, watermelons need hot weather (heat) to develop their sugars. And yes, watermelons need sun – drenched days to produce the rampant vines, that manufacture carbohydrates that sweeten the fruits. But they don’t need endless days of such weather. Plenty of delicious watermelons can be grown in summer starved places from Montana to Maine and into Canada by using varieties that mature in 85 days or less, heating up the soil fast and starting seeds indoors. Even in areas with longer growing seasons, these early birds provide a sweet prelude to the later season favorites.

Numerous heirloom watermelons, some brought from Russia, and other varieties developed by cold – climate breeders, mature within the 85 day window and are available early. Smaller fruits and early flowering are traits that set apart watermelons that mature early in the growing season.

Watermelons are native to Africa, and the trick to getting the best – quality fruit in cooler climates is to duplicate the continent’s hot sun and sandy soil as best you can. Situate the watermelon garden in a south facing, full – sun area. Because seeds and transplants do nothing until the soil has warmed to at least 60 degrees, use clean or black plastic to heat up the ground. If you want to go a step further using plastic. You can use a clear plastic film over seeds or young plants to generate more heat. Late watermelons can be ripened under plastic.

You can use black landscape cloth instead black plastic. The cloth allows the soil to breathe and water to pass through, something plastic does not do. You can use the black plastic on the ground and spun polyester row covers over transplants to give them a fast start. The covers are excellent for controlling cucumber beetles and vine borers, which are the worse watermelon pests. Row covers must be removed when plants start to bloom so that pollinating insects can reach the flowers.

Light fluffy soils warm faster than do clay ones. Plus, watermelons love loose, well – drained dirt. You can amend the ground with compost or leaf mold, or a cover crop such as winter rye or hairy vetch the previous fall. Turn it over in the spring a month before you plant.

If you are in search of a perfume watermelon? It is the apple – sized ‘Queen Anne’s’ pocket watermelons are the aromatic giants of the watermelon world, redolent with a perfume described best as a mix of ripe cantaloupe, pineapple and a hint of jasmine. This heirloom also is known by the names ‘Plum Granny,’ ‘Dudaim,’ ‘Perfume,’ and ‘Pomegrante.’ It has been around for hundreds of years and was especially favored by the Victorians. Ladies of the era carried them in their pockets and purses as perfume. Although they are attractive in their velvety orange rinds striped in creamy and gold, these watermelons sadly are not gourmet fare. In fact, the creamy white flesh is barely edible, its tasteless and slimy. ‘Tigger‘ is very similar to ‘Queen Anne’s’ in appearance, but it’s three times bigger and even more aromatic. Plus, it’s tasty. Seed catalogs describes ‘Trigger‘ as vibrant yellow with fire-red zigzag stripes. Its white flesh is sweet with a citrus aftertaste. Each watermelon is about one pound, perfect for one or two servings. Plants are prolific, too and watermelons are ripe in about 80 days.

Here Is A List Of Early Maturing Watermelon Varieties:

 

 

 

 

 

Leave a Reply


Share
Tweet
Pin
Share
+1
0 Shares